Which of the following would be correct?

  1. It's dangerous to walk on the road.

  2. It's dangerous to walk in the road.

  • 2
    Depends on context. – Hot Licks May 21 '17 at 13:02
  • However, "On the Road Again" is a Waylon Jennings song and refers to travelling. – Xanne May 22 '17 at 10:27
  • @Xanne Waylon Jennings may have sung it, but I believe Willie Nelson wrote it and made it popular. However, Jennings did write a lot of road songs: "Road", "Road to Nowhere", "The Road goes on Forever", and "Wrong road to Nashville". – Cascabel May 22 '17 at 17:10
  • 1
    @Cascabel You're right! I just got the wrong name there. Thanks. – Xanne May 22 '17 at 19:14

Each version is correct, but each expresses a slightly different meaning.

"It's dangerous to walk on the road" might be used to indicate a hazard associated with the road in general, such as the existence of gangs of thieves who rob pedestrians.

"It's dangerous to walk in the road" is somewhat more specific, suggesting a distinction between walking along the edge of the road vs walking in the middle. It also has associations with related phrases such as walking in traffic.

So it would be dangerous to walk ON the road because you might get robbed, or struck by lightning during a storm, etc, while it is dangerous to walk IN the road because you might get hit by a car.

| improve this answer | |

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.