Accidents happen every day and in places like New York City. Pedestrians and automobiles crowd the streets, and accidents involving pedestrians happen quite frequently too. Sometimes, the consequence can be devastating.
It resulted in a proposal for new legislation that requires the Department of Motor Vehicles to suspend the license of any driver involved in a crash where their loss of consciousness was a contributing factor.
Of course, pedestrians must also make sure they’re following the rules of the road in order to keep themselves safe. Here’s what you need to know about New York pedestrian laws and steps you can take to protect yourself from knockdowns when traversing the streets.
New York Pedestrian Law: The Basics
There are some basic laws pedestrians are required to abide by on the streets for everyone’s safety. These include:
- Obeying all traffic signals, pavement markings, and signs when crossing the street
- Not walking on expressways or interstates
- Drivers must yield to pedestrians when there is no traffic signal and if there is a crosswalk
- Drivers must yield to any pedestrian using a cane or a guide dog when approaching a crosswalk or intersection
- Pedestrians must yield the right of way if there is no sign, signal, or crosswalk
- On the sidewalk, a vehicle exiting or entering a private drive, private road, driveway, building, or alley must yield right of way to a pedestrian
- If there is a sidewalk that is safe to use, then pedestrians are required to use it but if there is no sidewalk, then pedestrians must walk on the right side of the roadway to face traffic as they walk
Some Safety Tips for New York Pedestrians
It’s important to note that as a pedestrian you always have to be aware of what is coming at you. While everyone tries their best, accidents happen for all types of reasons. To keep yourself safe, abide by all traffic rules and:
- Don’t dart into the street. Vehicles traveling at just 30 miles per hour can need up to 125 feet to come to a stop
- Be careful in bad weather. Drivers will need more time to stop in inclement weather and visibility may not be great for the driver, either
- Look both ways. Your mom was right to tell you to look both ways before you cross the street because it’s important even if you have the right of way
The Responsibility of Drivers in New York
Drivers need to work to be safe on the roads too. The Department of Transportation wants drivers to always be on the lookout for a pedestrian by:
- Always looking for pedestrians when turning
- Yielding to pedestrians when appropriate
- Staying alert for children in areas where they tend to be such as near schools or parks
- Not stopping in the crosswalk but before you get to it in order to ensure pedestrians have enough space
No one wants to be involved in an accident, especially an accident where someone is seriously injured or even killed. It’s up to everyone on the road to ensure they’re following the rules and being as safe as they possibly can to avoid pedestrian knockdowns. If you do what you need to do, then everyone can safe.