The Twin Cities are very walkable, but if you’re going to be crossing a number of streets to get to your destination, it pays to understand the right of way laws so that you and anyone else around you can stay safe. Of course, as a pedestrian, it’s also important to understand that a driver won’t always yield even though you technically have the right of way, so you need to walk defensively, because you’re going to lose any battle with a vehicle. Below, we take a closer look at the right of way laws for pedestrians in Minnesota.
Minnesota Right Of Way Laws
Right of way laws can certainly come into play during a personal injury claim if you are struck by a driver, so it pays to know the laws so that you aren’t deemed to be at fault for your injuries. Here’s a look at some of the laws you need to know.
- Drivers are required to stop at all marked and unmarked crosswalks and intersections for crossing pedestrians. This means that even if there is no paint, if it is a crosswalk where people are expected to be able to cross the street, drivers must stop for pedestrians waiting to cross.
- Pedestrians cannot enter a crosswalk if a vehicle is approaching when doing so would not give the driver enough time to safely stop. Per the law, “No pedestrian shall suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a vehicle which is so close that it is impossible for the driver to yield.”
- Pedestrians must obey traffic signals and signs at all intersections that have them.
- A driver is allowed to begin moving once the pedestrian has completely crossed the lane in front of their stopped vehicle. The driver does not need to wait until the pedestrian completely exits the crosswalk, so long as they have completely cleared the driver’s lane.
- Other drivers cannot pass a vehicle that has stopped to allow pedestrians to navigate a crosswalk or intersection.
Failing to follow these laws can result in a misdemeanor, punishable by up to 90 days in jail and fines up to $1,000. Moreover, if the driver owns the majority of the fault in the accident, the injured pedestrian can file a personal injury lawsuit against them and their insurance company.
Again, it’s important to remember that you need to walk defensively and never assume that a driver will follow the laws and yield to your right of way. As the old adage goes, the graveyard is full of people who had the right of way, so make sure that you pay attention as you traverse streets and crosswalks so that you don’t end up injured.
If you do end up needing legal representation after a collision with a vehicle, make sure that you connect with a law firm that has a proven track record of helping injured parties get the compensation they deserve. For more information, or to see if you may have a legitimate claim to compensation, reach out to the team at Hey Workers today at (844) 439-9675.