Alexandria Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Initiatives
- Street Smart Campaign - Street Smart is an annual public education, awareness and behavior change campaign in Washington, D.C. region. The campaign uses radio, newspaper, transit advertising, public awareness efforts, and added law enforcement to respond to the challenges of pedestrian and bicycle safety. In addition to the region-wide awareness efforts, Alexandria conducts pedestrian and bicycle trainings for all DASH bus drivers, does targeted enforcement events at problem intersections in coordination with the Street Smart campaign, provides safety information at GO Alex events, and posts safety messages in English and Spanish on DASH buses.
- Adult Bicycle Education - The City of Alexandria sponsors classes in the spring, summer, and fall through the Washington Area Bicyclists Association (WABA).
- Safe Routes to School - Alexandria Public Schools provides bicycle and pedestrian education for children in Alexandria's public schools.
Safety Tips for Drivers
- Stop for pedestrians at crosswalks and be careful when passing stopped vehicles.
- Slow down and obey the posted speed limit.
- Yield to pedestrians and cyclists when turning.
- Look before opening your door.
- Allow 3 feet when passing bicyclists.
Safety Tips for Bicyclists
- Obey all traffic signals, signs and lane markings.
- Always wear a helmet.
- Ride on the right side of the road with the flow of traffic. Pass slower moving or stopped vehicles on their left.
- Ride far enough away from the curb to stay clear of opening car doors, potholes, debris and sewer grates and to maintain a straight line.
- Be alert, scan the route ahead for traffic, opening car doors, pedestrians and obstacles on the road surface.
- Ride predictably so that others can see you and predict your movements. Use hand signals to indicate turns.
- Be visible; use lights, and reflectors are required when riding at night. Brightly colored or reflective clothing can help increase visibility.
- Avoid bicycling upon sidewalks, especially in areas where motorists may not expect bicyclists or may have obstructed visibility. Unless designated by signage prohibiting such conduct, persons may ride a bicycle upon any sidewalks located within the city. However, bicycling on the sidewalk is prohibited in the King Street/Union Street Commercial Zone. This zone is on King Street, from West Street east to the Potomac River, and on Union Street, between Prince Street and Cameron Street (City Code - Chapter 7, Section 10-7-4).
Safety Tips for Pedestrians
- Cross at the corner or at marked crosswalks.
- When crossing, always look both ways, even on a one-way street.
- At traffic signals, cross only when you have a “Walk” sign or symbol.
- A flashing “Don’t Walk” sign means don’t start—but if you’re already walking, proceed across carefully.
- Watch for turning traffic.
- Use pedestrian buttons where available.
- Take note of when the sun is in drivers’ eyes, especially at sunrise and sunset, and proceed with extra caution.