Do Pedestrians Have the Right of Way?

Do Pedestrians Have the Right of Way
pedestrian, traffic, croing, pedestrians, driver, accident, safety, injuries, street, crowalk

Pedestrians do have the right of way as long as they are lawfully crossing a street. They do not have the right of way if they are in a crosswalk or other section of the street unlawfully. 

If you or someone you love was injured by a negligent driver while crossing the street, the at-fault driver could bear financial liability. Proving your actions and your right to recover damages can be a complicated process. A local pedestrian accident lawyer in Orlando can help you build a strong case and fight for the best available damages for you. 

The State of Florida Takes Pedestrian Safety Seriously

Florida Statutes § 316.130 describes the laws that promote pedestrian safety. It requires pedestrians to: 

  • Obey all traffic control devices such as walk signs
  • Use sidewalks whenever they are provided
  • Walk on the left shoulder of the road when sidewalks are not provided
  • Walk in a manner that is facing traffic 
  • Not stand in a roadway
  • Yield the right-of-way to all vehicles when crossing outside of a marked or unmarked crosswalk

Vehicles on the road are also required to respect pedestrian traffic. Accordingly, drivers are required to:

  • Come to a complete stop at a traffic control signal (red light or stop sign)
  • Allow a pedestrian already legally in a crosswalk to finish crossing
  • Yield the right of way to a pedestrian in a crosswalk without a traffic sign or signal
  • Not overtake a stopped vehicle at a crosswalk 

This list is not exhaustive. Just as drivers are required to know and obey the rules of the road, pedestrians should be equally aware of their rights and responsibilities. 

Situations When Pedestrians Do Not Have the Right of Way

Because of their vulnerability in crosswalks and other sections of the road, pedestrians should be vigilant about crossing streets and roads as safely as possible. Pedestrians do not have the right of way when a driver has a green light and when a pedestrian traffic signal indicates Do Not Walk.

Pedestrians should err on the side of caution, remain alert, and look at both sides of the road to determine whether a street crossing can be completed safely. 

To consult with an experienced pedestrian accidents lawyer today, call 855-780-9986

Pedestrian Safety Tips: Avoiding Accidents and Injuries

Florida’s streets can be packed with traffic and activity, especially during heavy tourist seasons. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) guidelines offer the following pedestrian safety tips:

  • Cross streets only at crosswalks or intersections
  • Watch for cars on streets, in driveways, and in parking lots
  • Avoid alcohol and drug use that might impair your thinking or coordination when walking
  • Keep paying attention until your cross is complete
  • Cross only in well-lit areas when a crosswalk is not available
  • Never walk or run into moving traffic

These tips can help you stay safe when crossing the street and in the flow of pedestrian traffic. Following them can protect you and your loved ones from serious injury. You should also hold the hand of a young child while they are crossing with you.

Driver Safety Tips: The Basics of Pedestrian Safety

No matter what type of motor vehicle or cycle you are driving, you should always keep a careful eye out for people in the street. Small children can be difficult to spot, so your vigilance can be even more important. 

Additional pedestrian safety tips for drivers include:

  • Process cautiously in low-visibility areas
  • Tailor driving to road and weather conditions
  • Yield to pedestrians in crosswalks 
  • Do not overextend into a marked crosswalk when stopped
  • Do not drive while under the influence
  • Obey the speed limit and traffic sings

Safety is everyone’s concern. Avoid potential distractions in and outside of your car and pay attention in high pedestrian traffic areas like parking lots. 

What are Some Commonly Reported Pedestrian Accident Injuries?

Various vehicles can strike a pedestrian in a crosswalk—cars, trucks, buses, bicycles, and motorcycles. Because the pedestrian absorbs the full force of a collision, the injuries they suffer can be significant.

Some commonly reported pedestrian accident injuries include:

  • Whiplash and concussion 
  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Bones breaks and fractures
  • Soft tissue and internal injuries
  • Back and spine injuries
  • Neck and shoulder injuries
  • Facial and dental trauma
  • Psychological trauma

Seek immediate medical attention after an accident and stick to your treatment plan until your healthcare team declares that you have reached maximum medical improvement. 

Who Pays the Medical Bills for a Pedestrian Who Had the Right of Way?

If you were a pedestrian with the right of way and were hit by a negligent driver, the driver is financially liable for financial compensation for your bodily injuries. In addition to medical care, you can request compensation for:

  • Current and future loss of income
  • Loss of future earning ability
  • Disability and disfigurement
  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Mental and emotional anguish
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

A personal injury lawyer can help you file an insurance claim or lawsuit. They can assess your injuries and negotiate a favorable financial settlement. If your family lost a loved one in a pedestrian accident, specific family members can recover wrongful death compensation.

How Long Does an Injured Pedestrian Have to File a Lawsuit?

You generally have two years to file a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit, according to Florida Statutes § 95.11. Failure to file your lawsuit within the allotted time can mean you lose the legal right to file it at all. When a lawyer handles your case, they can correctly interpret the filing deadline for you.

What If the Driver Blames the Pedestrian?

Per Florida Statutes § 768.81, if someone more than 50 percent responsible for their accident, they may not be able to seek compensation. If you did contribute to your accident, it is still possible to seek damages, but drivers may try to say your actions make you more than 50 percent responsible to prevent paying you for damages.

Even if you weren’t at fault at all, they may still try to shift some of the blame onto you to reduce how much they owe you. We can defend you from these tactics and make sure you get fair compensation.

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Get Help Obtaining Compensation for a Pedestrian Accident

Pedestrians do have the right of way if they are crossing in a crosswalk. If you obeyed the pedestrian laws and were injured by a negligent driver, you could be entitled to a range of recoverable damages. 

Explore your options for financial compensation by contacting our consultation team at Bogin, Munns & Munns today. One of our team members will review the merits of your case at no cost or obligation to you.

Call or text 855-780-9986 or submit our Consultation Request form today



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