OTTAWA – Ottawa Police Service (OPS) traffic and patrol officers will be focused on speed enforcement and downtown intersections this weekend, as a reminder to commuters to adjust their behaviour when it comes to seeing and being seen on the road.
“In summer, you have high visibility in early morning until mid-evening,” OPS Traffic Unit head Inspector Marc-André Sheehy said. “That’s not the case in the fall and winter, so you need to take extra steps for your safety and follow the rules of the road.”
In the last week, eight pedestrians and one child on a bike have been hit be vehicles.
Insp. Sheehy offers safety advice for everyone commuting in the early morning, at dusk or in darkness:
If you are walking or riding, make sure other road users can see you. That means wearing bright, reflective clothing and/or using lights that make you more visible.
Pedestrians, walk facing traffic, cross at intersections and be aware of your surroundings. Keep device use to a minimum so you are not distracted.
Bikes are considered vehicles and must follow the same rules. If you are using the crosswalk, walk your bike. Don’t ride on the sidewalk where it’s difficult for drivers to see you.
Drivers, share the road with bicycles and double-check for pedestrians when you are entering intersections to ensure someone isn’t in your blind spot.
“However you commute, make your safety and that of other road users your priority,” Sheehy said.