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New Feature from Mark M. Bello

Not Fake News is pleased to announce a new monthly feature. the "Justice Counts Blawg" from contributing writer Mark M. Bello, legal thriller author, attorney, and originator of the Justice Counts podcast.

Slated for the first Monday of each month, the Blawg will provide common-sense discussions and solutions of common legal issues. Here's the first installment:

Walk-- and Drive This Way

Hey folks, October is National Pedestrian Safety Month, a good time to concentrate on keeping yourself and your loved ones safe on our roads, whether you're driving, walking, or riding a bicycle.

Distracted walking incidents are on the rise. In 2020, 6,504 pedestrians were killed by drivers, the largest number since 1989, according to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA). This is a 21% increase over 2019 and equates to a traffic-related pedestrian death every 84 minutes.

Although many pedestrian accidents occur due to driver negligence, pedestrians are becoming increasingly more distracted. Therefore, it is imperative for drivers and pedestrians alike to follow simple rules to reduce this alarming problem for those on foot or a bike.

If you’re driving:

  • Look out for pedestrians everywhere, at all times.

  • Never drive while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

  • Use extra caution around crosswalks.

  • Always yield to pedestrians.

  • Don’t assume that people are crossing when the car ahead of you stops.

  • Follow the posted speed limits.

  • Observe school crossing signs and school bus rules.

  • Slow down in pedestrian areas and give yourself plenty of time to stop.

If you’re walking:

  • If there is no sidewalk, walk to the side of the roadway facing traffic.

  • When possible, cross the street at intersections or marked crosswalks.

  • Watch for turning vehicles, even if there is a “No turn on red” sign.

  • When crossing a street, try to do so from a position that allows for the best possible view of traffic.

  • Watch out for blind spots around trucks and buses.

  • Watch for cars entering or exiting driveways or backing up in parking lots.

  • When walking at night, try to wear bright or reflective clothing to enhance your visibility.

  • Limit distractions such as using mobile devices while walking.

Following these tips will help keep pedestrians, but most importantly to all – use common sense. This October and throughout the year, let’s work together to keep everyone safe on our roadways. Remember, drivers and pedestrians alike share the responsibility of keeping themselves and others on the road safe.

Mark M. Bello, a trial lawyer, is the author of “Betrayal at the Border" and other ‘ripped from the headlines’ Zachary Blake Social Justice Legal Thrillers available on and other online booksellers. For more information, please visit Mark also is co-host of the new podcast, Justice Counts, now streaming.

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