Time to turn back your clocks, replace the batteries in your smoke detectors and let your light shine!
With the end of daylight saving time Sunday morning, Nov. 2, comes a darker evening commute. Whether you head to work before daylight or head home in the dark — or both — TriMet’s “Be Seen Be Safe” campaign encourages riders, pedestrians and bicyclists to light up your wardrobe, your accessories and your bikes.
Improving visibility means improving your safety and it is as easy as 1, 2, 3
- Wear light or bright colors
Research shows a pedestrian in dark clothing will not be seen by a driver until they are 55 feet away, giving the driver less than one second of reaction time. When walking or biking in the dark hours, go with light-colored or bright coats. Or, light or bright accessories such as scarves, hats, gloves, shoes and backpacks can help you be seen.
- Rock those reflectors
According to the Federal Highway Administration, studies have shown that the risk of being hit by a motorist in the dark is eight times lower when wearing a safety reflector. Companies make hats, coats, other apparel, bags and other items with reflective elements. Or add reflective tape, stickers or reflectors to your backpack, coat or bike. Reflective vests can be found at local construction supply stores and can be an inexpensive alternative.
- Let your light shine
Lights are the best way to see and be seen. Use lights freely whether on a bike or flashing blinky lights attached to clothing or bags. Many products, such as armbands, hats and vests, come with lights in them. Carrying a flashlight can be helpful too.
For more safety tips go to trimet.org/beseen.
Transit riders — Get that glow!
Every transit rider is a pedestrian first and last as you make your way to the bus stop, MAX station or transit center, so think about your visibility before you head out. Also, in the dark morning and evening hours, it can be difficult for our bus operators to spot riders at some stops. Wave a reflector, wear a safety blinky light, have a small flashlight or use your cell phone display to alert the operator as a bus approaches. Some mobile devices and mobile apps, including the free TriMet Tickets app, have a strobe or light feature for this purpose. Please do not shine flashlights or bright lights in operators’ eyes. It can also be helpful to wave as the bus approaches.
Night Stop gets riders closer to destinations after dark
TriMet’s Night Stop allows operators to drop riders off along the route between bus stops — if it’s safe to do so. Here’s how Night Stop works:
- Between 8 p.m and 5 a.m., in neighborhoods outside Portland City Center and Lloyd District, ask your operator if it is possible to be dropped off at a non-designated stop.
- Make the request a block or two ahead of where you would like to get off the bus.
- Your operator will determine if there is safe spot to deboard; if unsafe, the operator may drop you at an alternate spot, if possible.
- If the bus turns left in the same block as requested stop, the drop-off will be after turn is made.
Be alert, be safe
Being visible isn’t enough when biking or walking in the dark or in the daylight. Be alert. Take out your ear buds and put away your phone or other distractions when crossing streets or train tracks. And, look both ways. In most areas, MAX trains, buses and cars travel both directions.
On, Wednesday, Nov. 11, join us for a fun — and bright — group bike ride from Pioneer Courthouse Square, over Tilikum Crossing to Base Camp Brewing! We’re hosting a nighttime group bike ride with our friends from The Bicycle Transportation Alliance to encourage riders to “let your light shine” to be seen and be safe. Learn more at the event listing on TriMet’s Facebook’s page.