What basic Pennsylvania traffic laws do drivers have to follow when driving near pedestrian areas?

Categorized: Pedestrian and Bicycle Accidents

What basic Pennsylvania traffic laws do drivers have to follow when driving near pedestrian areas?

Yielding right-of-way is important when considering basic Pennsylvania traffic laws that pertain to driving near pedestrian areas. At the same time, it’s just as important that motorists remain alert and aware of their surroundings in the event a pedestrian suddenly appears.

Pennsylvania Traffic Laws Pertaining to Motorists Yielding Right-of-Way

Whenever pedestrians are in a marked or unmarked crosswalk at a non-controlled intersection, they have the right-of-way. Anytime a motorist comes upon a crosswalk, there is the potential for someone to be there, so it’s important to be especially vigilant when making turns.

Another law regarding the right-of-way is when driving across an area that pedestrians share. When entering or exiting areas shared by vehicles and pedestrians, drivers must yield to pedestrians, like sidewalks that extend across:

  • alleys;
  • driveways; and
  • entrances to buildings.

If a motorist were to approach an intersection or any area that has a crosswalk and another vehicle has stopped in order to allow a pedestrian to cross, he/she must also stop. In other words, the motorist cannot pass or overtake the vehicle that has stopped.

At any time, whether or not there is an intersection or crosswalk, if a pedestrian has a service animal or a white cane, vehicles must yield. In some cases it might be necessary to completely stop.

School zones can be dangerous, especially with the potential for small children to dart into traffic. The law is that when signals are flashing or it is during the time period indicated on the sign, motorists cannot drive more than 15 miles per hour.

If there is a sign that indicates a bicycle crossing is ahead, drivers should be prepared to slow down. Of course, the same applies to signs that indicate a pedestrian crossing. In some situations it may require making a complete stop.

Determining Fault in a Car Accident with a Pedestrian

Many pedestrian accidents can be avoided by not only following these basic Pennsylvania traffic laws, but simply being aware of one’s surroundings. However, there are circumstances in which a pedestrian is at fault for an accident. For instance, when someone crosses against a signal or runs into traffic unexpectedly.

After an accident it is important to gather as much evidence at the scene as possible. But seeking medical attention for anyone who has been hurt takes priority. All involved should attempt to get the contact information of other parties involved in the accident. If there were any witnesses to what happened, get their contact information as well.

If another arty requires attention in an emergency room or is incapacitated and cannot provide this information, it can be obtained later. This is why filing a police report is so important.

It might be necessary to secure legal representation for help establishing the other party is at fault for the accident. Cordisco & Saile LLC handles accident cases and can assist victims of motor vehicle or pedestrian accidents who wish to pursue compensation for their damages.

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