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One third of pedestrians killed are 65 and older

Senior citizens need to be careful when they take walks. Choosing the right route at the right time of day is a must for safety.

Has walking become an extreme sport for seniors?—What with aggressive drivers, icy sidewalks and traffic lights that never give them enough time to cross the street, it may seem so.

That's exactly what it seems for many seniors who either brave the dangerous conditions or choose to shut themselves up in their homes.

When one considers the fact that one-third of all pedestrians killed each year are 65 years of age or older, it's easy to understand why many of them may be nervous.

And yet, walking is an excellent form of exercise for seniors, and for that matter for people of all ages. Not only does it help seniors remain autonomous, but it improves their physical and mental health. For these reasons, it's important that seniors continue to enjoy this activity safely. Of course, seniors also play a role in preventing accidents, so here are some tips on doing so.

•Avoid walking during rush hour, crossing the street only at the right place and right time, investing in good shoes and supports to ensure proper balance and not carrying too much.

•Asking for help when they need it is another good idea.

•Drivers also have to look out for the safety of pedestrians and their responsibilities go beyond simply following traffic laws. Defensive driving and courtesy should always be practiced on roads.

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