What You Should Know About Pedestrian Laws

Pedestrian Accident Attorney Grand Rapids

While Michigan doesn’t have a state crosswalk law, Grand Rapids has its own city ordinance to protect pedestrians. As of February 6, 2018, motorists must come to a complete stop for pedestrians at marked or unmarked crosswalks. The only exceptions are at intersections regulated by traffic signals or police officers. If you are a pedestrian, you must wait for the “walk” signal before crossing an intersection.

Almost 129,000 pedestrians received emergency treatment for non-fatal auto accident injuries in 2015. Auto accidents killed another 5,987 pedestrians in 2016.

Continue reading to learn about your rights as a pedestrian. Our pedestrian accident attorneys are ready to help you fight for the compensation you deserve for auto accident injuries.

Does Michigan Have a State Crosswalk Law?

No, Michigan does not have a state crosswalk law. But the Michigan State Police recommends that municipalities adopt the Michigan Uniform Traffic Code. This code requires vehicles to yield to pedestrians instead of coming to a complete stop.

What Causes Pedestrian Accidents?

Pedestrian accidents usually occur when drivers aren’t paying attention. Some common distractions include texting, eating, drinking, fiddling with the climate control settings, or changing radio stations.

Of these, the scariest distraction is texting. According to the National Highway Safety Administration, “sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for 5 seconds. At 55 mph, that’s like driving the length of an entire football field with your eyes closed.”

Motorists may also cause accidents when they drive under the influence, speed, fail to stop or yield, make left-hand turns, or back up. All these factors help determine fault in a pedestrian accident.

Learn More: 5 Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents >>

How Can Pedestrians Avoid Accidents?

Be aware of your surroundings. As a pedestrian, you’re safer if you’re able to hear what’s happening around you. For example, you need to be able to hear the screeching of a motorist slamming on their brakes or the squealing of tires. You can’t hear anything in your environment if you’re wearing headphones listening to music.

Even if you have the right-of-way, you should look in both directions for oncoming vehicles. All it takes is one distracted driver to change your life forever. Exercise caution and don’t expect other vehicles to always stop for you.

Do you walk in the early morning or at night? If so, you’ll want to wear light-colored or reflective clothing. It’s difficult for motorists to spot you if you’re wearing dark-colored clothing. The more visible you are to motorists, the safer you’ll be.

Despite taking every precaution, nothing can prepare you for an irresponsible driver who’s not paying attention to the road. Sometimes you can do everything right and still get injured in a pedestrian accident. That’s why we recommend hiring one of our personal injury lawyers to help you receive the compensation you deserve for car accident injuries.

Call Beurkens Law Today!

Were you or a loved one injured in a pedestrian accident? If so, your first step should be to meet with one of our pedestrian accident lawyers in Grand Rapids, MI. To request a free consultation, call Beurkens Law at (616) 459-5344.

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