Daylight saving time took place earlier this month and, while this means an extra hour of sleeping in, it also means it will be darker during the daily commute.
The City’s Target Zero staff were at the Kenmore Park and Ride on Monday, Nov. 6 to promote commuter safety during these shorter days. Commuters had some breakfast and a reflective item before they got on the bus.
With the winter months quickly approaching, there are many safety precautions that can be taken both for personal safety and home safety. The following tips are for driving/walking/bicycling during the winter months, as well as suggestions for keeping homes safe.
Driving in the dark:
- Prepare the car for night driving. Check and clean your headlights, taillights, signal lights and mirror faces.
- If there is any doubt, turn your headlights on. Lights will make it easier for other drivers to your vehicle. Being seen is as important as seeing.
- Drive at a safe speed and increase following distances, especially in the rain.
- If there is car trouble, pull off the road as far as possible. Turn on flashers and the dome light. Stay off the roadway and get passengers away from the area.
- Have an emergency roadside kit in the car. Include items such as jumper cables, flashlight and extra batteries, flares, first aid kit, basic tool kit, blankets, bottled water, snacks, ice scraper, tire pressure gauge, duct tape and washer fluid.
Walking/biking in the dark:
- Wear bright or light colored reflective clothing.
- Carry a flashlight when walking at night. Have a light attached to your jacket/bag.
- Cross the street in designated well-lit areas.
- Stand clear of buses, hedges, parked cars or other obstacles before crossing the street to ensure maximum visibility.
- On a bicycle, use a front white light and a red rear reflector.
- Stay alert and aware of surroundings.
- Make sure smoke alarms are working. Test them by pushing the test button.
- Consider installing a carbon monoxide detector as soon as possible. Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas created when fuels (such as gasoline, wood, coal, natural gas, propane, oil, and methane) burn incompletely. In the home, heating and cooking equipment that burn fuel can be sources of carbon monoxide. High levels of carbon monoxide can be fatal.
- Use fireplaces safely – never leave a burning fire unattended and make sure a fire in a fireplace is completely out before going to bed.
- Use caution with space heaters – always allow at least three feet of empty area around space heaters.