Buena Park Pedestrian Accident Attorneys
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Pedestrian accidents can result in devastating, life-changing and fatal injuries. One way to decrease your chances of being involved in a pedestrian accident is to understand California laws and local laws relating to pedestrians.
For example, pedestrians who have the right of way can hold at-fault drivers responsible for their injuries, damages and losses.
In some cases, if a dangerous or defective roadway caused the accident, the governmental agency responsible for maintaining the roadway can also be held liable.
An experienced Buena Park pedestrian accident lawyer can help injured victims and their families better understand their legal rights and options.
California Vehicle Code section 21950 grants pedestrians the right of way when in a crosswalk or at an intersection. The law states: "The driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within any marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection."
The same section also states that the driver of a vehicle approaching a pedestrian within any marked or unmarked crosswalk "shall exercise all due care and shall reduce the speed of a vehicle or take any other action relating to the operating of the vehicle as necessary to safeguard the safety of the pedestrian."
This means that motorists must yield the right of way to pedestrians who are legally crossing the road in a marked crosswalk or an unmarked crosswalk at an intersection. Drivers who fail to yield the right of way to pedestrians who are legally crossing the roadway may be cited or criminally charged. They can also be held financially responsible for the pedestrian's injuries and losses.
There are many right-of-way laws that can affect the safety of nearby pedestrians. Under California Code 21663, car drivers must not operate a vehicle on the sidewalk. California Vehicle Code 22517 requires all motorists to look for pedestrians, bicyclists and motorists before opening their door. According to California Vehicle Code 22106, motorists may only back up when it is safe to do so.
It is common for pedestrian accidents to occur as the result of someone stepping into traffic or crossing where there is no crosswalk. Car drivers are less likely to look out for pedestrians where pedestrians cannot legally cross the road. That does not, however, mean that drivers are excused from exercising due care where there is no crosswalk.
California Vehicle Code 21954 requires all motorists to exercise due care around pedestrians. This law states: "Every pedestrian upon a roadway at any point other than within a marked crosswalk or within an unmarked crosswalk at an intersection shall yield the right-of-way to all vehicles upon the roadway so near as to constitute an immediate hazard." It same section also states: "The provisions of this section shall not relieve the driver of a vehicle from the duty to exercise due care for the safety of any pedestrian upon a roadway."