Even when armed with magic wands, capes and wings, children are left powerless in a match with a vehicle. So to protect the witches, goblins, princesses, pirates and other creatures taking to Maryland streets Saturday, October 31, the Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) will lend reflective vests to children and their chaperones as part of the annual “Vests for Visibility” Program. Designed to be worn over clothing, the reflective vests help increase the visibility of pedestrians – both children and adult chaperones. The vests will be available in most counties, at most SHA Maintenance facilities, during the days just before the holiday. They may be picked up between Wednesday, October 28 and Friday, October 30 from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. The reflective vests will be issued on a first come, first served basis and need to be returned by Friday, November 6.
“Whether borrowing a vest or not, be sure to stay visible during evening hours – on Halloween and every night,” said SHA Administrator Gregory C. Johnson, P.E. “With the upcoming time change, it will be dark earlier making it more difficult for drivers to see pedestrians and cyclists. When walking or biking be sure to wear something bright and when driving use extra caution and follow speed limits. We all need to look out for each other, so everyone returns home safe and sound.”
• Stop for pedestrians – Maryland law requires motorists to stop for pedestrians in marked crosswalks and intersections.
• Stay alert – park the mobile phone.
• Obey the speed limit. Speeding only makes it more difficult to stop unexpectedly.
• Motorists should be more cautious during peak trick-or-treating hours between 4 p.m. and 9 p.m.
• Enter and exit driveways slowly. Use caution when turning at intersections.
• Be alert for children darting across the street and crossing between parked cars.
• When driving children to and from different activities, make sure all seat belts are fastened and let children out of the car on the curbside.
• Never drink and drive. Designate a sober driver.
• Look left, right, and left again before crossing the street.
• Cross at crosswalks or intersections.
• Be sure to see and be seen. Avoid dark clothing, wear bright colors and use reflective devices such as vests and blinking lights.
• Avoid costumes that may impair vision.
• Make eye contact with drivers when crossing the street.
• Stay alert and be on the lookout for cars traveling above the speed limit.
2015 Vests for Visibility Participating SHA Maintenance Shops:
Anne Arundel County
Glen Burnie Shop
910 Stewart Ave
Glen Burnie, MD 21061
138 Defense Highway
Annapolis, MD 21401
Golden Ring Shop
8375 Pulaski Highway
Rosedale, MD 21237
150 Wyndtryst Drive
Westminster, MD 21157
4401 MD 32
Dayton, MD 21036