Couple of weeks ago, while running on the streets of Nairobi, i had a motorist unnecessarily use her car horn on me for trying to cross the road (on a marked crosswalk btw), and the traffic light clearly indicated the STOP SIGN for motorists. A lesson learnt to never trust motorists especially when running outdoors.
Since COVID 19, many gyms were forced into closure (among many other places such as restaurants etc) to help curb the spread of the virus. As a result, outdoor running became popular especially here in Nairobi. One of the beautiful things about running is in its simplicity and just as any other activity, there are risks that will always keep you on toes and tiny bit worried to some extent. From negligent inattentive drivers on the roads to unexpected obstacles, there is so much to be worried about when running outdoors.
Safety Tips for Outdoor Runners:
- Be seen
- Avoid the road – pavements should be your besties
- Ditch the headphones – remain present and avoid distractions
- Run against traffic
- Give way to vehicles even when you have the right of way. Whether the car or the runner has the right of way in a situation, a collision is likely to be far worse for the runner.
As a runner, my message to motorists would be (and is) as follows:
We aren’t running on the streets to make your life harder. We just want to run without the fear of being run over. There needs to be a sense of responsibility, conscience and respect to the people around us; whether motorist, pedestrians, runners etc.
Road Safety is a concern not only for motorists but also for other road users such as pedestrians, cyclists and runners.