The club for runners in Saratoga Springs, NY

Guest blog: Staying visible while you are running

28 Feb 2018 6:43 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

As a runner, you understand the importance of making sure drivers can see you when you go out for a run near traffic. You must do everything that you can to make sure you stand out so you will be noticed by drivers as you are running near vehicles or alongside traffic. Making sure you are visible to drivers is essential to ensuring your safety. There are several different things you can to do be proactive and to make sure you are noticed by drivers. Here are some of the leading tips for staying visible when you are out running:

Dress to be Seen - Making sure you wear fluorescent colors that stand out and won't just blend in with the landscaping will help you be noticed. Black, green, brown, and blue just blend into your surroundings. Wearing hot pink, lime green, bright yellow, hot pink, or orange will help you stand out. Wearing a fluorescent jersey, vest, or jacket is the key to staying safe

Run Toward Traffic - Never run with traffic because you cannot see what is happening behind you. Instead, follow traffic laws and run toward traffic. This way, if you do see a vehicle coming toward you there is an ample opportunity for you to jump out of the way.

Run on The Sidewalk - When it is permitted, you should run on the sidewalk. This keeps you farther from the vehicles and keeps you safer. Use the sidewalk as a buffer between you and vehicles.

Run with A Running Buddy - It is much safer to run with someone. After all, two people are much easier to see than just one person. With both of you wearing fluorescent clothes, you will get much more attention. Also, if you have a medical emergency you have a friend who can call for help. It is always better to have someone along.

When Out After Dark - If you are running before dawn or after dark, make sure you are visible and stand out. Get reflective tape to place on your clothing, particularly across your back and your chest. Put some on your shoes as well. Wear reflective bands on your ankles and wrists. A brightly colored safety vest with reflectors on it could be helpful. Running with a flashlight in front of you pointed down will help you stand out. A flashing LED light can be worn on a string around your neck or pinned on your clothing for additional attention.

Obey Traffic Laws - You must know the traffic laws and obey them. That means you should not run too close to parked cars or zip in and out of traffic. Don't jaywalk and always obey all the traffic signals. Be responsible for your own safety.

Always Stay Alert - Watch for any vehicles, and this will help you be much more noticed. Watching your surroundings and doing what you can to stay visible so you are less likely to be struck by a vehicle.

Choose Well-Lit Areas - If you are out running while it is dark, choose areas where there is proper lighting. You shouldn't run through communities where you aren't familiar with the streets. The lighting enables drivers to see you and you to see your surroundings as well.

Watch Out for Vehicles - You want to keep a distance between you and vehicles when you are running. Consider the distance to be a safety barrier. By staying alert so you can get out of the way if you need to, you are protecting yourself. Don't run too close to cars or in between vehicles because you are putting yourself in the driver's blind spot and increasing your chances of being hit. Running too close to parked vehicles can cause you to be doored.

Never let your guard down and always assume that drivers won't notice you. If you enjoy running, you are well aware of the importance of being proactive about your own safety. Improving your visibility is detrimental to your safety. By dressing in bright colors, adhering to traffic laws, running with a buddy, and by staying alert, you can significantly decrease your chances of being in an accident. Stay alert of your surroundings, so you can stay away from cars that could cause you harm. By staying visible, you can significantly decrease the likelihood of a driver not seeing you and you being hit by a vehicle while you are out for a run. With the proper safety precautions, you can enjoy many more years of running free from accidents.

This article was provided by, an organization dedicated to providing the public with information about personal injury and safety information. Nothing in this article should be construed as legal advice, and it is intended for informational use only.

Copyright Saratoga Stryders, 2020
The Saratoga Stryders, a 501(c)(3) affiliate chapter of the Road Runners Club of America. P.O. Box 1467, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

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