Runners encouraged to run safe

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Manila Chief of Police Jackie Hill encourages runners to be safe. Chief Hill said there was an accident recently on Wildy Road and he wants to avoid any more if possible.

Manila Chief of Police Jackie Hill encourages runners to put safety first.

"More and more people are running, jogging or walking. Many enjoy running in the mornings even before daylight or in the evenings, but they really need to be safe," Chief Hill said. "Drivers need to pay attention and be more aware of runners, but runners need to take safety precautions."

Runners and walkers should wear bright colors, walk toward the traffic and not use ear phones. Runners need to be aware of their surroundings and be able to hear traffic or dogs.

"We had an incident where a dog came at a runner two mornings," Chief Hill said. "We located the dog's owner and have not had any more problems."

Chief Hill also reminds runners to carry identification with them and let someone know the route they will be running.

"If there are sidewalks in the area, run on sidewalks," Hill said. "There is a walking trail at the city park. When the new water park is completed there will be a jogging trail available."

Safety tips for joggers and runners:

*Always run against traffic. Try to avoid busy roads and those with no shoulders or sidewalks.

*Run, jog or walk with a known companion.

*Run, jog or walk in a familiar area.

*Do not run, jog or walk in a heavily wooded, poorly lighted or secluded area.

*Particularly if running, jogging or walking alone, don't wear radio or recorder earphones. Limit distractions. Cutting off your sense of hearing means you can't hear oncoming cars, cyclists, unleashed dogs, or other potential threats.

*Wear bright colored clothing to improve your visibility. If running in the early morning or at night, even at dusk, wear white, yellow, or orange clothes. Make sure you have reflective gear on. Some running shoes and jackets have reflective pieces on them. It doesn't hurt to add more. A headlamp is also a great item for runners who do a lot of early morning or evening runs.

*Always have identification on you. Put your driver's license in your pocket or wear an ID tag on your shoe.

*Don't make assumptions about drivers.

*Carry a cell phone.

*Even if you are running on a path or in a park with no cars, always be aware of other runners and cyclists.

*Let someone know the route you are running and approximately how long you will be out.

Chief Hill also offers tips on defense against dogs that appear to be unfriendly.

*When encountered by a threatening dog, the impulse is to often turn and run. This can be the worse response, however, since such movement can trigger the chase instinct in dogs.

*Stand very still and attempt to be calm.

*Don't scream at the dog and run.

*Be aware of where the dog is. Look in its general direction, but don't stare into its eyes. This can be considered an aggressive challenge to a dog.

*Let the dog sniff you.

*In a low voice say, "No! Go home!"

*Stay still until the dog leaves.

*Back away slowly until it is out of sight.

*If a dog does attack, try to "feed" it your workout jacket or other items of clothing.

*If you are knocked down or fall, curl into a ball and keep your hands over your ears and face. Try not to scream or roll around.

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