With fewer places to go lately, families are capitalizing on the clean air outdoors. It’s healthier to take advantage of the additional space in your yard to get active and still keep a distance from others. But it’s easy to forget that local streets can be dangerous, even when they’re not as busy. Take advantage of these ways to make streets safer in your neighborhood that isn’t difficult or expensive so that you won’t have to retreat indoors.
Look Out for Each Other
Unfortunately, good intentions can backfire, so most people have adopted a “mind your own business” mindset. But you have a responsibility to your neighborhood, and when you alert your neighbors to potential trouble, you can expect they’ll return the favor. Keep an eye on any kids playing outside, and write down the license plates of any cars that regularly speed down the street.
There’s a higher likelihood of accidents when drivers can’t see stop signs or speed limits, not to mention pedestrians. If you can clean up any overgrown landscaping or medians, drivers will have a clearer view of danger in their paths. Pedestrians can protect themselves if they can better see oncoming cars, too. If your neighbors can’t or won’t clean up their yards, respectfully offering to help might solve the problem.
Update Traffic Signs
Remove any doubt about street regulations by installing new signage that’s specific and easy to see. Make sure there’s no foliage obstructing it, and swap out faded signs for new ones. Even older signs that seem to be in good shape won’t be as effective as newer ones that benefit from technology that makes them brighter than ever.
Research Other Installations
There may be restrictions at the local and state levels, so you’ll need to inquire about regulations. You’ll gain more support by attending homeowner association meetings and open government forums. You might come up against logistical limits and budget concerns. But you might find some concrete ways to make streets safer in your neighborhood, too. A few possibilities:
- Zebra stripes
- Speed bumps
- Bicycle lanes
- Street lighting
- School crossing guards
Use Your Streets
That doesn’t mean playing Kick the Can in the middle of the road, but empty streets can actually increase accidents. Drivers who are accustomed to rarely used streets are more likely to speed on through, and new drivers who don’t see many pedestrians might miss the occasional bicyclist or jogger. When there’s no one around, drivers might feel more tempted to hit and run. But if you and your neighbors get outside and use your yards and streets, you can warn each other of impending danger or correct anyone not behaving safely. You can have a lot of control over your neighborhood streets, even if you stay on the sidelines.