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Autumn means more runner injuries on our roads

To put it simply, the autumn season in Colorado is spectacular. There is a brisk chill in the air, and the mountain valleys transform into a rainbow of burgundy, chocolate brown and crimson. Wildlife is beginning to settle in for the cozy winter, and the ski resorts are gearing up for yet another fun-filled season on the powder. For runners, it's often the perfect time to head out to clock those miles.

However, running in the fall can be more dangerous, especially on the winding roads of Denver. Visitors and residents alike need to remember that their passion for running can be risky, and you must remain aware of your surroundings when you are on the shoulder of the road. While there's no sound data on the number of runners who are killed or injured by vehicles on the side of the road, the Center for Disease Control does note that about 4,000 pedestrians are killed each year as a result of being struck by a motor vehicle. 

What makes motor vehicle accidents more prevalent in the Autumn?

Motor vehicle accidents, including those that involve pedestrians or runners, are more prevalent during the autumn season for a variety of reasons. To start, there is simply more traffic on the roads. All of the kids have gone back to school, which means that school buses as well as parents who are dropping off their kids are hitting the highways. Sometimes, these drivers are in a rush or they are distracted with their busy morning routines, and they aren't as likely to take note of a runner on the side of the road.

Changing weather also accounts for an increased number of car accidents in the autumn. There are more rainy days in the fall season, and many of the mornings in Denver start off foggy. This minimizes visibility for the drivers on the road, which prevents them from seeing a runner who is on the shoulder.

Even those beautiful leaves can increase the risk of car accidents. As the leaves fall, they can cake on the roadways, making them become slick. It is difficult to stop when the roads are covered in leaves, and drivers can sometimes swerve onto the side of the road — the same place where runners are often getting in their morning jog. 

What should you do if you are injured while running in Denver?

If you are injured while running in Denver this fall, the first thing you need to do is get in contact with a personal injury attorney. When a motor vehicle accident occurs as a result of driver negligence, you may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against the driver. It is important that you get the compensation that you deserve to cover the cost of health care, lost wages and emotional damage.

Runner safety tips for the Autumn season

Runners who want to soak up the beauty of nature during the autumn season can follow these tips from Runner's World to stay safe:

  • Avoid running alone. Pick a running buddy to jog with you along the Denver roads. When you have someone with you, you will be more visible to oncoming traffic and you also will have someone available in case of an emergency.
  • Observe traffic patterns on new routes. Take the time to study the paths that you plan to take, so that you know when there will be a high volume of traffic or where visibility may be obstructed.
  • Wear bright colors. Your clothing needs to stand out against the backdrop of trees and roadways, so that drivers can see you at all times. 

Certainly, the risks of running in the autumn in Denver should not stop you from getting your favorite form of exercise. By remaining vigilant and taking extra precautions, you will be able to run through your favorite trails and alongside those tree-lined roads, enjoying the views that surround you and the crisp mountain air that fills your lungs.

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