It is important to be courteous of other pedestrians, drivers on the roads

Deanna Huffman and Deanna Huffman

Like most students attending the University, my main mode of transportation to and from class is walking.

Occasionally, if the weather is nice or if I’m running late, I’ll even ride my bike and longboarding is another popular option for many students.

Not relying on cars is both cost-effective and a beneficial form of exercise, but both pedestrians and drivers alike are faced with a few different challenges while navigating.

First and foremost, not all drivers respect the notion that pedestrians have the right-of-way at crosswalks.

All too often, I’ve witnessed hurried drivers speeding through crosswalks after rolling stops, just narrowly missing a pedestrian who assumed the driver would courteously yield.

Although 4-way intersections with stop signs are not as dangerous as high-speed, multi-lane roads, pedestrians should get in the habit of communicating with drivers and vice versa.

A simple wave lets the pedestrian know he or she can walk safely in front of a car and conversely a nod or a wave in return is a polite way to say “thank you.”

However, crosswalks aside, drivers are not required to stop their vehicles for a hoard of people running across the street at unmarked locations.

This is particularly dangerous at night or when the pedestrians have consumed alcohol. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that the driver is paying attention to the road and not texting while driving.

While operating a 4,000 pound vehicle around a busy college town is certainly not the time to take your eyes off the road, as we all know, texting while driving does occur frequently.

The dangers not only involve other cars, but pedestrians as well and it is an incredibly irresponsible act.

To the drivers, this is a challenge to put the phone down when you put the key in the ignition.

Distracted driving not only puts your own life at risk, but the lives of many other people as well.

To the pedestrians, this is a challenge to be mindful of your surroundings and to be courteous to everyone you share the road or sidewalks with.

Oftentimes the biggest annoyance to those walking is, in fact, other pedestrians or bicyclists.

Zipping past people on your bike or longboard, taking up the entire sidewalk to leisurely chat and catch up with a group of friends, unmindfully walking with your head down to text or suddenly stopping while walking are just a few of examples of the mild annoyances that can disrupt the flow of foot traffic.

Whether someone is driving to lot 12 or walking to a lecture hall or on their way to the union, we are all on campus to get to a class or to be somewhere on time.

A little respect and common courtesy for individuals can go a long way and improve everyone’s commute along with their day.

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