Accidents with pedestrians can occur anytime, especially in busy cities and roadways throughout the United States. Colorado is no exception to this, as there has been an 89% increase in pedestrian deaths over a ten-year analysis. With many unfortunate accidents occurring between pedestrians and drivers, it is essential to understand pedestrian crosswalk laws in Colorado.
Knowing who has the right of way can decrease the number of accidents over time and help you in a lawsuit, whether a car accident or a wrongful death case. At Mintz Law Firm, our skilled attorneys are dedicated to our clients in Colorado, and we are eager to help in any case presented to us. Below, you will find more information about pedestrians, drivers, and our pedestrian crosswalk laws in Colorado.
Through the Left Behind Campaign, Colorado DOT creates awareness for pedestrians and how drivers can be more mindful of their surroundings so that both pedestrians and drivers can arrive at their destination safely. Under Colorado law, there are clear outlines of who has the right of way under which situations and conditions on the road. Knowing these laws can help drivers and pedestrians utilize roadways and crosswalks more efficiently.
When determining fault in a car accident, the most essential question is who had the right of way. Pedestrian crosswalk laws explain when pedestrians can safely use crosswalks and when cars have the right of way. Both parties are responsible for following the transportation codes to utilize their right of way and prevent accidents safely.
However, many accidents are caused by either party not yielding to the other when they do not have the right to proceed safely. In the case of a car accident, state laws enforce penalties for the driver at fault. Pedestrians can also pursue a claim to cover the injuries and damages.
Colorado Statute 42-4-802 states pedestrians’ right of way in crosswalks is as follows:
“(1) The driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way by slowing or stopping, if needed, to any pedestrian crossing within a crosswalk when the pedestrian is on the half of the roadway upon which the vehicle is traveling. …(3) No pedestrian shall suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and ride a bicycle, walk or run, into the path of a moving vehicle that is so close as to constitute an immediate hazard.”
This explains that drivers are obligated under the law to yield to pedestrians at a crosswalk and entirely stop if needed. Pedestrians must also be cautious and not leave a sidewalk or curb to cross until it is safe to do so. Both parties are required to follow traffic laws and regulations.
In addition to the right of way at a crosswalk, different symbols and control signals help control traffic between cars and pedestrians. A walking person symbol indicates that it is safe to cross and walk on the crosswalk. Cars are to be aware of pedestrians when they turn and drive along. In addition, “walk” and “do not walk” traffic signals indicate when it is appropriate to walk on the crosswalk. Pedestrians have the right of way whenever the symbols indicate they do.
The Colorado Department of Transportation reported 87 pedestrian deaths from traffic accidents in 2021. Unfortunately, despite the efforts to keep safe and effective traffic rules and regulations, many still fall victim to fatal accidents. Colorado Statute 42-4-802 also addresses a driver’s responsibility at a crosswalk. For example, drivers are not allowed to pass a stopped vehicle to allow a pedestrian to cross the street even if it is not clear who had the right of way.
At times, pedestrian-car accidents occur at the fault of a driver not paying attention or yielding to people walking. Pedestrians may also be at fault if they fail to cross the street at a crosswalk when traffic signals indicate it was safe to do so. Depending on the cause of an accident and other factors, you may be able to recover compensation for an accident. If you are a pedestrian involved in a car accident and have suffered injuries due to a driver’s neglect, you have the right to seek compensation and hire a lawyer that can help.
Pedestrian accidents are frightening and stressful for anyone involved in the accident. At Mintz Law Firm, our personal injury and Colorado car accident lawyers provide the best legal representation for your case when you’ve been in a pedestrian-car accident. We understand the law and can help you receive the just compensation owed to you for your suffering and damages. Contact our office by calling (303) 462-2999 or fill out our contact form to get in touch with our law firm and schedule your free consultation.