Driver's Responsibility for Pedestrians
One out of every six traffic fatalities across the country is associated with a pedestrian accident, which means that pedestrian safety is a critical issue. Driving responsibly when pedestrians are near is essential. Drivers can reduce the risks associated with pedestrian and other accidents by providing plenty of room as they drive past pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists. Drivers must also stop and yield to pedestrians in crosswalks and use extra caution when turning at intersections or when changing lanes.
Pedestrians are particularly vulnerable in collisions with motor vehicles. Regardless of the right-of-way, pedestrians are virtually always at a greater risk. Pedestrians can suddenly cross your path, walk behind your car in parking lots or step off the curb and into the road with little or no warning. If a vehicle has stopped at a crosswalk, do not pass it, and never drive on the sidewalk except to cross it. When driving across a sidewalk, always yield to any pedestrians who are on the sidewalk. Take particular care when a pedestrian has an assistance dog or a white cane. Visually or otherwise impaired pedestrians are at a significantly increased risk and should always be granted the right-of-way.
Drivers are often used to virtually owning the roads, but we must share them with other users, including pedestrians, to ensure maximum safety for all users. Following all traffic signs, following the rules of the road and taking extra precaution in neighborhoods, school zones and urban areas can all reduce your risk of colliding with a pedestrian.