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MDOT reminds drivers to be alert as clocks "spring forward"
March 12, 2021 -- As clocks "spring forward" to daylight saving time at 2 a.m. Sunday, March 14, the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) reminds drivers to watch out for pedestrians, joggers, and bicyclists. Sunrise will occur one hour later, meaning that it will be darker later in the morning.
"As the weather gets warmer, we anticipate more people getting out for some exercise and fresh air," said State Transportation Director Paul C. Ajegba. "Pedestrians, joggers, and bicyclists should wear brighter, reflective clothing in order to be seen more easily, and those behind the wheel need to pay close attention and eliminate distractions while driving."
Drivers are reminded that bicyclists are permitted to ride on most roadways in Michigan. Bicyclists are reminded that, as legal roadway users, they are required to obey all traffic laws, signs, and signals. A person operating a bicycle upon a highway or street at less than the existing speed of traffic shall ride as close as practicable to the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were 6,205 pedestrian deaths and 846 bicyclist deaths in the U.S. in 2019 resulting from traffic crashes. These incidents were 2.7 percent and 2.9 percent lower, respectively, from the previous year. NHTSA's data showed that most of the pedestrian fatalities (76 percent) and bicyclist fatalities (50 percent) occurred during dark conditions between 6 p.m. and 8:59 p.m. In Michigan, there were 149 pedestrian fatalities and 21 bicyclist fatalities in traffic crashes, with 81 percent pedestrian fatalities and 48 percent bicyclist fatalities involved in traffic crashes that occurred during low light or dark conditions.
MDOT continues to work with partners statewide on the Toward Zero Deaths safety campaign based on the National Strategy on Highway Safety, which is intended to influence driver behavior and improve safety. For more information on the Toward Zero Deaths campaign, visit www.Michigan.gov/ZeroDeaths.
Toward Zero Deaths logo.