The Law Offices OfPhilip M. Tobin

What is the right of way for pedestrians?

The roadways in California are a shared space. They see not only traffic from passenger and commercial vehicles but also pedestrians. Everyone on the roadways needs to obey the law and watch out for each other to avoid accidents. As a pedestrian, you should know and understand the right of way rules as explained by California Legislative Information.

To begin with, crosswalks can help keep you safe. These marked walkways alert motorists that you may be in the area and help them to pay more attention. If you are in a crosswalk, a motorist must yield to you. However, this does not give you the right to run in front of a vehicle or to cross when you know a vehicle is coming. If you see a vehicle coming down the road, you cannot begin crossing until you have clearance to do so safely.

These rules do not just apply to marked crosswalks. They also apply when there is no marked crossing. In general, if you are walking in the road, vehicles must allow you to cross. Of course, you cannot purposely hold up traffic by stopping or otherwise not continuing straight across the road. To stay safe while crossing the street, make sure to always look both ways and pay attention to any vehicles in the immediate area. Pay special attention to cars turning right on red and busy intersections. Never assume a vehicle will stop. Always be cautious and pay attention, and move swiftly across the road. This information is for education and is not legal advice.

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