How many times have you been driving to work before the sun has come up when seemingly out of nowhere appears a runner who is dressed in dark clothes and is hardly visible?
While neither state nor federal offices track car accidents specifically related to runners, last January, Runner’s World conducted a search of online reports and newspapers and discovered that nearly 20 runners were killed by either cars or trucks during the first 10 months of 2009. Click here for the complete article.
Below are several tips for how to stay safe during these dark winter months. The first and most important tip is to wear gear that is highly visible.
1. Wear Visible Gear
Because we want to help you run safe, we decided to test Brooks NightLife gear to see just how much more visible it is than your average running clothes. The result? The non-Nightlife running gear acted as very effective night time camouflage while the Nighlife gear glowed in comparison.
Featured Brooks Gear:
2. Run Against Traffic
If you can’t avoid busy roads while running in dark, be sure to run against the flow of traffic on the shoulder or sidewalk. This will make it easier to see oncoming cars and react in case the driver is swerving or not paying attention to the road.
3. Run with a Cellphone, But Don’t Listen to Music
While jogging along to your favorite tunes may make running more enjoyable, try to avoid playing music while running at night. This will allow you hear traffic as it approaches. However, do run with your cellphone. This will allow you to call for help in case of emergency, such as rolling an ankle while running your favorite side street.
4. Run on Lit Streets
Plan out a route that is well lit and safe. Pick streets that are heavily populated with street lights and other pedestrians. During this festive time of year, try to find a neighborhood with lots of holiday lights to jog through. Also, be sure to trust your instincts. If a road or trail feels unsafe, choose another direction to run.
5. Run with a Light
Even if you are running on lit streets, bring something to light up the path in front of you. This will not only make you more visible to traffic and bikers, but will also help keep you from rolling an ankle or running into puddles. Similarly, if you’re worried about being visible to traffic approaching from behind, try out NightLife Hat. This hat includes a flashing rear L.E.D. light to help you be visible from all directions.
Have other suggestions? Add a comment below.
What does it look like to run safe? Take a look at this video featuring Brooks nightlife gear.