Dec 16 2013

Fact or Fiction: Pedestrians Always Have the Right of Way

Pedestrian safety is a serious issue. According to the Utah Driver Handbook, a pedestrian is a person on foot or who uses a conveyance such as skates, skateboard, et., other than a bicycle.  Pedestrian deaths occur in 17 percent of all traffic fatalities!  Considering how dangerous and deadly pedestrian accidents can be, it would seem logical that pedestrians always have the right of way.  This is FALSE, PEDESTRIANS DO NOT ALWAYS HAVE THE RIGHT OF WAY.

Pedestrians have the right of way in crosswalks.  Most intersections have a pedestrian crosswalk whether or not lines are painted on the street.  Most crosswalks are located at corners, but they can also be located in the middle of the block.  If you are a pedestrian and crossing the street not in the crosswalk, you could be considered the at fault party if an accident occurs.  Most people are taught to look both ways and then cross the street to be safe.  However, the safest thing to do would be to look for a crosswalk and use it.

Although pedestrians do not always have the right of way, it does not give drivers a free pass when they hit pedestrians.  Here are a five safety tips to help drivers avoid hitting pedestrians:

1. Always stop for any pedestrian if the block, at corners with or without traffic lights, even if there are no lines painted.

2. Stop before you get to a crosswalk.

3. If a pedestrian makes visual contact with you, and he or she is crossing the street, just let them pass.  Always yield to pedestrians even if they are not crossing the street properly.

4. Allow older people, disabled people, and young children plenty of time to cross the street.

5. Don’t pass vehicles that are stopped at a crosswalk.  They might be waiting for a pedestrian to cross in front of them.

Our Salt Lake City Personal Injury Attorneys have handled pedestrian accident cases throughout the state of Utah. If you or a loved one has been injured or even killed in a pedestrian accident because of someone else’s negligence, please contact our Salt Lake City pedestrian accident lawyers immediately.  We don’t charge anything for you to meet with an injury or car accident attorney to discuss your legal options.  Also, if we take on your case, we don’t charge anything until we win or settle your case.