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Lace up and head out but stay safe
Spring is on its way and more of us will head out running in the mornings and evenings. The days become longer and conditions are warmer, but light levels are still low and it’s still important to take some safety precautions.
Make sure you stay safe with these 4 low light running safety tips.
Low light running safety tips
1. Be safe, be seen
How easy is it for drivers to see you? Maximising your visibility allows road users and other pedestrians to see you from a greater distance. This gives them more time to adjust their speed and course.
Since Covid lockdowns, we’re hearing many people saying that car drivers are going faster and taking less care. Many drivers aren’t paying full attention. There are so many distractions, especially in urban areas.
In low light levels drivers are less likely to spot you. Especially if it’s raining, misty or cold with vehicles having misted up windows.
Help yourself be seen: use running lights, wear light coloured high-visibility and reflective clothing.
We have a variety of high visibility and reflective running gear in stock, including chest running lights and hi-viz vests by Gato.
2. Always do a traffic check
It’s stating the obvious: but don’t cross roads and junctions without looking!
Assuming vehicles have seen you could be a very painful mistake. It won’t be the vehicle driver that gets hurt.
Drivers should note that in 2022 the Highway code was updated to give pedestrians priority. The 2022 Highway Code says that if pedestrians have started crossing the road and drivers want to turn into the road, pedestrians have the priority and the traffic should give way to them.
3. Choose safe routes
Ideally choose routes that are away from roads with wide well-lit paths.
If you need to run on the road then keep towards the right hand side of the road, facing oncoming traffic. If necessary move on the path or verge and stand as far away from the traffic as possible.
Be prepared to move off the road if a vehicle does not deviate from you. It’s advisable to run without wearing headphones or earbuds so you can hear traffic and other potential hazards.
4. Safety in numbers
Running with a companion or in a group is safer. Running is fun with friends!
Running in a group or with another person gives a second, or multiple sets of eyes to spot hazards. Plus it means you’re a larger target which makes it easier for drivers to spot you and steer clear.
You’re also less likely to have unwanted interference from people, potentially bad intentions.
It’s a good idea to let someone know your route and when you expect to be back. You can also use tech sharing live location* to make sure someone knows your current location while you’re out.
*To show your current location, live, while out WhatsApp has “share live location” and Strava has “beacon for mobile” look in settings.
Think about your route, be aware of your surroundings and take extra precautions when necessary.