Welcome to fall! September is one of my favorite times of the year. Return to routine, back to school and the regular rhythms of our lives with a whole year of upcoming seasons and events to look forward to. Spending so many years in school has resulted in my feeling like the year starts in September, not fall. This fall as you return to your activities, keep in mind a few things that you can do to keep yourself and your loved ones safe:

1. Stop distracted driving. Just say no to being distracted while you are driving. Say no to the phone. Say no to texting while driving. Say no to applying make up while driving, eating while driving or performing any other task that distracts you from the important job of driving. Distracted driving is one of the main causes of accidents on our roads. That brief second that it takes to check a text message could  change someone’s life forever. It can wait until you are done driving;

2. As the weather changes and the days are darker, make sure that you are wearing appropriate clothing that enables you to be seen if you are running or walking outside. Black is one of my favorite colours too but remember if you are dressed in all dark clothing and it is a dark rainy day, no one can see you. Wear a lighter  colored coat, or get a flasher. Anything to draw attention and ensure that you are seen;

3. Wear a helmet if you are riding a bike. Always. A helmet can prevent a brain injury. A brain injury is a life altering and often permanent consequence.

4. Make sure that you have some type of light or reflector on your bike if you are using it to commute. With the change in the weather and the decrease in daylight hours cyclists become even harder to see.

5. Put a light or a reflective collar or leash on your dog, especially if he is dark colored.

Enjoy the fall and stay safe.

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