Pedestrian crashes are on the rise across the United States. The Governors
Highway Safety Association estimates that 6,000 pedestrians were killed
nationwide in 2016, a significant increase from the 5,400 fatalities in 2015.
many San Diego pedestrian crashes, the careless actions of drivers are to blame, including driving under
the influence of alcohol or drugs, speeding, making illegal turns, and
failing to stop for signs and signals. To stay safe, pedestrians must
always be vigilant, particularly at busy intersections or during evening
hours when accidents are more likely to occur.
Testing Your Pedestrian Street Smarts
It is important to be aware of certain pedestrian safety “myths”
that could put you in danger. Below are a few examples:
MYTH #1: Pedestrians always have the right-of-way: 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. However, when outside of a crosswalk, pedestrians
must yield the right-of-way to all nearby vehicles that present an immediate hazard.
MYTH #2: Drivers will stop at a crosswalk: Always be cautious while walking, even in a crosswalk. Because drivers
don’t always yield to pedestrians, intersections are one of the
most common locations for serious pedestrian accidents. In fact, some
drivers may even speed up to beat a pedestrian to the crosswalk.
MYTH #3: Drivers will obey a traffic signal: Running a red light is one of the most common traffic violations. Accordingly,
pedestrians should always look both ways (left, right, and left again)
before stepping off a curb and into the street, even when they have a
MYTH #4: If you see a car, the driver sees you: Because drivers may be distracted from the roadway by their cell phones,
car radio or even other passengers, it isn’t safe to assume the
driver sees you. Try to make eye contact with the driver before crossing
the street and wait for the vehicle to come to a stop before stepping
off the curb.
MYTH #5: Distractions are limited to drivers: It is also important for pedestrians to be fully alert when walking near
traffic. That means pedestrians should avoid listening to music, texting,
or using their cell phones while walking.
If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a pedestrian accident,
a San Diego personal injury lawyer at the Law Offices of Robert Vaage
can help. Call today for a free consultation.