I can count on both hands the number of times that I have recently encountered walkers or runners that I could not see at night until I was right up on them. Pedestrians and runners have the right of way, but when they cannot be seen, this constitutes a problem. The majority of people have been wearing dark or black clothing with no reflective wear or a flashing strobe.
There is no way to prevent the inevitable if walkers and runners do not do their part. I was recently traveling on South Chester Road, and encountered a group of teenagers that were on both sides of the road, and in the road. Again, pedestrians have the right of way, but how far does that go when people intentionally impede traffic? Walkers and runners are supposed to travel on the oncoming traffic side of the street, while bicycles are supposed to travel with the traffic, following all traffic laws.
I witnessed two walkers about 5 a.m. this morning on Rt. 10; fortunately they were on the sidewalk, since I could only see a small reflector on one of the walker’s tennis shoes. It is every walker and runner’s responsibility to make themselves as visible as possible, both in the daylight and in the darkness. Once walkers and runners have done their part, drivers must do theirs. The first action should be to slow down, and maybe even stop. Drivers must do everything possible to prevent hitting a pedestrian.
If you choose to run early in the morning or after dark, my suggestion would be to run in a place where there is little or no traffic; this might mean that you will have to drive to a better place to run. If this is not possible, then you must make yourself visible. Vehicles hit people far too much. Do your part to fix this.