Auto-pedestrian accidents happen on a regular basis here in Texas and throughout the United States. In many cases, these accidents are the result of a negligent or distracted driver. Because of the prevalence of these types of serious accidents, Texas lawmakers have begun to establish rules that govern how both drivers and pedestrians behave. For example, in Texas, pedestrians always have the right of way over cars when they cross streets at traffic light intersections or intersections controlled by an electronic pedestrian crossing signal. This means that all autos must yield the right of way to pedestrians when there is a green traffic light or “walk” sign. In the event an intersection is not controlled by a traffic light or walk sign, the driver must still yield to the pedestrian.
These laws have created some confusion for drivers, in particular. Unmarked crosswalks present an interesting predicament for drivers, as they assume they have the right of way and pedestrians must yield. However, this is simply not the case. Unfortunately, this confusion and misunderstanding leads to numerous car-pedestrian accidents in Dallas and throughout Texas. While it is common knowledge that cars must stop for pedestrians when a marked crosswalk is present, many drivers do not know they must also yield to pedestrians at unmarked crosswalks.
Right of Way Laws in Texas
In order to ensure pedestrians are protected, Texas has implemented a series of laws outlining how drivers must yield to pedestrians in certain situations. As mentioned above, Texas law states that vehicles must yield the right of way to pedestrians at any crosswalk, whether marked or unmarked. Vehicles must also stop for pedestrians when they are approaching a car’s half of the roadway from the other side. This can create some confusion and frustration for drivers, as many believe pedestrians should always have to cross at a marked walkway. Other right of way laws in Texas pertaining to pedestrians include:
- Cars must yield if a pedestrian is approaching traffic from a sidewalk that crosses a driveway, private road, building, or alley
- When crossing the street at a crosswalk with traffic lights, pedestrians must only cross when facing a green light or when the “walk” signal is present
- Pedestrians are required by law to yield to cars when crossing anywhere other than marked or unmarked crosswalks
In addition to the above laws, many cities and municipalities throughout Texas have put into place additional ordinances that govern pedestrian crossings. For this reason, we encourage you to contact Rad Law Firm or your local police department to ensure you are aware of any such ordinances. If you or someone you love has been injured while crossing the street at a marked or unmarked crosswalk in Texas, please contact Rad Law Firm today. Our Dallas personal injury attorneys have the experience necessary to represent you and ensure you receive compensation for your injuries. Auto-pedestrian accidents are very serious and should be handled with care. Please give us a call today and schedule a free consultation.