According to the latest statistics, a pedestrian is killed approximately
every two hours and injured every eight minutes in a traffic crash. One
of the best ways to deter pedestrian crashes is for both pedestrians and
drivers to obey laws and signals consistently.
Under California law, both pedestrians and drivers have certain duties.
Below is a brief summary:
- The driver of a vehicle must yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing
the roadway within any marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk
at an intersection.
- The driver of a vehicle approaching a pedestrian within any marked or unmarked
crosswalk must also exercise all due care, which may include reducing
the speed of the vehicle or taking any other action needed to safeguard
the safety of the pedestrian.
- Whenever any vehicle has stopped at a marked crosswalk or at any unmarked
crosswalk at an intersection to allow a pedestrian to cross, the driver
of any other vehicle approaching from the rear cannot overtake and pass
the stopped vehicle.
- The driver of any motor vehicle, prior to driving over or upon any sidewalk,
must yield the right-of-way to any approaching pedestrian.
- Even when they have the right-of-way, pedestrians still have a duty to
use due care for their safety. For example, pedestrians cannot suddenly
leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of
a vehicle that is so close as to constitute an immediate hazard. They
also cannot unnecessarily stop or delay traffic while in a marked or unmarked
- When outside of a crosswalk, pedestrians must yield the right-of-way to
all vehicles that are so near as to constitute an immediate hazard.
- Between adjacent intersections controlled by traffic control signal devices
or by police officers, pedestrians cannot cross the roadway at any place
except in a crosswalk, i.e. “jaywalk.”