Walking, jogging, and biking on warm summer nights is a great way to exercise and a form of physical activity that you can continue doing into the fall. However, it is important that oncoming traffic can see you and this takes on an extra dimension as we get later and later into the year.
The sun goes down earlier and the nights become darker this time of year. That means drivers have even less time to see a cyclist or pedestrian, if they are not wearing appropriate clothing or have taken other measures to be seen.
Wearing light colored clothing or having a reflector or flashing light attached to your bike or clothing/shoes gives the sort of advance notice that allows drivers plenty of time to avoid you. Black jackets, shirts, and jeans may look cool, but they are completely inappropriate for people who will be walking anywhere other than sidewalks once the sun goes down.
For those of you who enjoy a little evening exercise, here are some additional precautions to take:
Know when the sun is going down
You can easily find out this information by checking your weather channel. If you don’t want to take the risk, plan your exercise time so that it is done and you are home before dark.
Parents: tell your children
Remember how carefree you were in your youth? You didn’t worry about letting safety get in the way of living in the moment and having a good time. Impress upon your children the importance of making sure they are visible at night. If that doesn’t work, consider limiting the amount of time they can be outside unattended. That will probably change their attitude.
Do your part behind the wheel
Remember to drive responsibly and carefully at night. Keep your eye out for cyclists and runners who may be jogging along the side of the road. Be sure to give them a wide berth when passing.