Let’s say you are like me and have to wake up early everyday to run (4:00 A.M. During the school year and 5:00 during the summer). It’s still dark out. How can you stay safe and not get hit by the newspaper delivery driver (Happens about every day, thanks Elkhart Truth)? First off, always make sure you are seen by drivers on the road. There are several different ways to do so and here are a few examples:
If you are a runner who runs a lot in the dark, as I am, a reflective vest is a must have. This vest cost me around $20 I believe. This one is made by Nathan who makes great running accessories.
Flashing LED lights
Also very helpful are these clip on flashing LED red lights. Gets the drivers attention easily. Just clip them onto your shirt, waist band of your shorts or pants, or your reflective vest. These here are made by Amphipod. I think they cost me around $8 a piece.
Another item to consider is a head lamp. The advantage here is, of course, being able to see further ahead of you and drivers would have a difficult time not missing you. The disadvantages are that if you have a poorly made headlamp it can bounce around on your forehead and bother you the whole run. Also, from behind, it is still difficult to see you if you are running on the right side of the road. PLEASE RUN ON THE LEFT SIDE OF THE ROAD!!!! Only on rare occasions is it safer to run on the right side of the road.
Wear bright colors. My wife always makes fun of my bright yellow and orange shirts that I run in, but she also knows why I do. I would strongly recommend bright colors even in the day lite.
I know a lot of people like to listen to music when running to keep there mind on something else or to keep them psyched up or something like that, but the chances of getting distracted and not hearing on coming traffic is not worth it. If you insist on listening to music, keep the volume down and one ear should not have music going into it.
My last recommendation for running safe, get a RoadID. A RoadID is basically what it sounds like. You put your name, emergency contacts, allergies. The reason for this is simple. If you were to be hit by a car or have some kind of health issues, they have some information on you. Obviously it isn’t everything, but it’s enough to get started with. RoadID comes in a form of a shoe tag or a bracelet. They even have a mobile app.
There have been way too many runners getting hit by drivers, one close to home. Be safe out there.