Runner Safety Guidelines

General Runner Safety Guidelines

  • Be aware of your surroundings. Use of headphones is discouraged as you’ll need your ears to be aware of your surroundings. Your ears may help you avoid dangers your eyes may miss during evening or early morning runs.
  • Run against traffic so you can observe approaching automobiles. By facing on-coming traffic, you may be able to react quicker than if it is behind you.
  • Look both ways before crossing. Be sure the driver of a car acknowledges your right-of-way before crossing in front of a vehicle. Obey traffic signals.
  • Carry identification or write your name, phone number, and blood type on the inside sole of your running shoe. Include any medical information.
  • Always stay alert and aware of what’s going on around you. The more aware you are, the less vulnerable you are.
  • Carry a cell phone or change for a phone call. Know the locations of public phones along your regular route.
  • Trust your intuition about a person or an area. React on your intuition and avoid a person or situation if you’re unsure. If something tells you a situation is not “right”, it isn’t.
  • Alter or vary your running route pattern; run in familiar areas if possible. In unfamiliar areas, such as while traveling, contact a local SRTT club or running store. Know where open businesses or stores are located in case of emergency.
  • Run with a partner. Run with a dog.
  • Write down or leave word of the direction of your run. Tell friends and family of your favorite running routes.
  • Avoid unpopulated areas, deserted streets, and overgrown trails. Avoid unlit areas, especially at night. Run clear of parked cars or bushes.
  • Ignore verbal harassment and do not verbally harass others. Use discretion in acknowledging strangers. Look directly at others and be observant, but keep your distance and keep moving.
  • Wear reflective material if you must run before dawn or after dark. Avoid running on the street when it is dark.
  • Practice memorizing license tags or identifying characteristics of strangers.
  • Carry a noisemaker. Get training in self-defense.
  • When using multi-use trails, follow the rules of the road. If you alter your direction, look over your should before crossing the trail to avoid a potential collision with an oncoming cyclist or passing runner.
  • CALL POLICE IMMEDIATELY if something happens to you or someone else, or you notice anyone out of the ordinary. It is important to report incidents immediately.

Group Run Safety Guidelines

  • Show up on time for a scheduled group run and bring your best attitude with you. Positivity is contagious.
  • Understand the purpose of the group run goals and distances so you can ensure it is the right fit for your training and social needs.
  • Sign-in, if that is a requirement, for the group run or training program session. This helps group leaders know who is participating in the day’s training run.
  • Follow the rules of the run such as stick to the designated route, be aware of your surroundings, leave no one behind, and follow all traffic rules. Wear reflective gear when group runs are done during periods with lower light.
  • Determine your pace-group before you get going. It’s okay to speed up or slow down, but be mindful about what pace you will be most comfortable sustaining over the full distance of the route. Be mindful of runners behind you if you need to take a walk break.
  • Stick to the designated route outlined for the group run. Keep in mind, in most areas, you must run/walk on the sidewalk and not in the street if sidewalks are available.
  • Be engaged with the group. Leave the headphones at home. Provide encouragement to fellow runners. Be mindful about your language and conversation topics. Respect and follow the groups code of conduct.
  • Don’t run more than two abreast, especially on busy roads, sidewalks, or multi-use trails. The goal is to share the roads/trails.
  • Obey all traffic signs. NEVER assume a driver is going to stop for you at an intersection even if you have the right-of-way. Pay attention to your surroundings, especially if your group is running on the road. Run against traffic on the roads.
  • The group should never leave a club member behind for any reason (bathroom breaks, “need to walk”, twisted ankle, etc). Use the buddy system.
  • Pay it forward. Volunteer to bring hydration supplies, to lead a pace group, to help with communications, and more efforts to help ensure the group runs are successful week after week
  • On multi-use trails, follow the rules of the road—travel on the right and pass on the left. Don’t run down the middle of the trail. Run to the right side to allow others to pass safely.
  • If you are running an out-and-back route on a trail, ensure the trail is clear of oncoming traffic (runners, cyclists, scooters, etc.) before making your u-turn.
  • Alert people when you are passing—don’t assume they are aware of their surroundings. A simple “on your left” warning will suffice.
  • Slower runners/walkers should use the outside lanes and allow faster runners to run the inside lanes.