The roads and fast moving vehicles are made for our convenience and surely we have derived a lot of benefits by using this provision. Our life is indubitably becoming fast paced, and increased pressure on the accelerator is now part of our routine. But wait! If you fail to follow the traffic rules, you might have to face a lot of legal complications and one such problematic situation can be failure to yield right-of-way to pedestrians which, we are going to discuss in this article.
In general perspective, the right of way comes into existence to avoid mishaps on the road. With increased traffic on the roads, it becomes the responsibility of drivers and pedestrians to make every attempt to negate any chance of a collision. It is clear that a driver is required to yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian on the crosswalk. Here safety of a pedestrian is the major concern which leads to the subsequent action that is taken against the driver of the vehicle when he / she fails to yield this right to a pedestrian. You may be ticketed and / or have to pay fines if you fail to do so.
Justification that is given on this front is that a person on feet has no cover for protection while a driver has the shield of vehicle to protect in case of any crash. This showcases that it becomes the responsibility of a driver to safeguard a pedestrian and yield the right-to-way to the pedestrian. There should never be a case when a driver has not given way to a pedestrian on the crosswalk or has stopped the vehicle very close. Without any doubts, any negligence on this part can be really dangerous and fatal for pedestrians and you the driver will have to face legal complication for that. To avoid such issues. drivers need to be vigilant while driving and have to respect the right-of-way and follow the rules properly.
Failure to yield the right of way to pedestrians at crosswalk is considered as a moving violation as it can result in death or severe injuries. It is the most common cause behind accidents around the world, and if you are found guilty of such offence in Canada – you will definitely face serious fines or even jail sentence. There are many cases where people faced serious charges such as road rage or hit and run because of failure to yield the right of way to pedestrians. So now let’s delve deeper in this area and see what is in store for you as a driver if you fail to yield the right of way to a pedestrian.
Fines and penalties in case of failure to yield the right of way to pedestrians
By now you are aware of the fact that if you are not yielding the right of way to a pedestrian in a crosswalk, you are in fact committing a grave mistake. You are risking the life of the person on the road and it has been observed that such scenarios can actually lead to fatal consequences. So you surely want to avoid such situations but if you are unfortunately become the guilty party due to this violation, then you have to face heavy penalties and fines. The fines and penalties are decided on your extent of violation and it is increased when you are a repeated offender. The result of violation in terms of accident, injury and death can lead to not only higher penalties and fines, but you also will have to face a lawsuit.
If you fail to yield the right of way to pedestrians – be prepared to pay huge amount of money as fines. You can be charged from $100 CAD to $500 CAD for the first time failure. In case of a second and third offence, you will be fined significantly more amount of money, and you may have to spend some time in prison. It completely depends on the impact of the accident as injuries of pedestrians will be higher, you will face serious charges accordingly. Pedestrian can also file a lawsuit against you with serious charges, such as attempt of murder. So you see, it is not as light as it seems, you can be in real fix if you are not following the rules on the road.
Adverse effect on the driving record
Moreover, your failure to yield the right of way to a pedestrian in a crosswalk can have severe repercussion on your driving record. If you fail to yield the right of way to pedestrians at crosswalk then you will be deducted with 2 demerit points from your driving records. It can also lead to driving license suspension for a very long period of time. The authorities keep track of your driving demerit points and any deduction triggers immediate action on your driving license and your previous record. It is the minimum charge that you will face (when no one is injured).
There are many other charges that are applicable for such an offence, in case you are found guilty in an accident caused due to failure in yielding the right of way. Your insurance premium will also be increased, especially if your points are deducted consistently. It means that once an individual has paid the fine, he/she will continue paying for such violation of law. Even if it was not your fault then also you can face serious lawsuit due to failure of recognizing and following this rule. Only when you have solid evidences that prove that you are not the party at fault only then you will be able to avoid legal complications. In most of cases, it is suggested to hire an attorney so that you can make sure that you face minimum charges.
Seek for attorney services
In case, you are facing serious charges because of moving violation then you should hire services of an attorney in order to avoid such legal actions. It is very important step because in court you need an attorney to represent your case. Your attorney will ensure that most of your charges should be dropped and you should only face minor fines. They are well aware of ways that make your case stronger. An attorney will gather evidence and actual details of the accident, and prove your innocence (if you are). You might not face any charges if your attorney can prove that you were not guilty of moving violation. Hence, it is imperative that you get in touch with an experienced and well-recognized lawyer for your case. You will be immensely relived if you have a responsible legal team to support you and help you come unscathed from the legal rut.
Now you are thoroughly aware of the dire consequences of your negligence on this front. So you might want to know how you can avoid such scenarios. Here we have complied various situations where drivers fail to yield the right-of-way. As you go through the pointers, you will be become acquainted with this rule more and it will surely help you in following it while you on the road.
Failure to yield right of way to pedestrians at intersections with lights
Intersections create most of problems to pedestrians because all people are confused about the right of way. Most of people think that you are clear to go on the green light when you are in the left lane. Motor vehicle drivers have only right to go first when the left turn arrow turns green. Misunderstanding in such condition leads towards accidents where too many pedestrians face serious injuries. You should follow traffic lights very carefully, particularly at intersections. You should pay attention to the road as well as people that are crossing it on their green signal. At some intersections, turning right while there is red light is prohibited, unless straight going traffic is clear. Any compromise with rules will lead towards failure to yield the right of way to pedestrians.
Failure to yield right of way to pedestrians at an uncontrolled intersection
At intersections without light points, it becomes more problematic place for all people, including pedestrians. All people avoid taking liabilities even pedestrians, and that is why a lot of accidents happen at intersections without a traffic light. Pedestrians should understand that they should cross the road only when it is clear. As a driver, you should give way to pedestrians to avoid accidents.
Rights of way of pedestrian on crosswalks
- Every motor vehicle driver should stop and remain stopped until a pedestrian has crossed the road via crosswalks. Even when a pedestrian has crossed half the road, then also travelling vehicle should stop until the pedestrian has crossed the vehicle lane. In simple words, you should stop and give the way to a pedestrian or otherwise you are violating the right of way of a pedestrian.
- No pedestrian should make sudden movement such as leaving curb or safe place, or walk while a vehicle is close, as in such situations it could not stop or yield. You might be risking too much if you as a pedestrian show carelessness in crossing the road.
- A pedestrian should give the way to emergency vehicles and government registered vehicles.
- You should not overtake the vehicle that is stopped very close to crosswalk at an intersection while a pedestrian is crossing the road.
Crossing the road via other than crosswalk
- Every pedestrian who is crossing the road, using other than marked or unmarked crosswalk at an intersection, should yield the right of way to vehicles that are on the road. If the road is clear and safe only then a pedestrian should enter and cross the road.
- If a pedestrian is crossing the road where a pedestrian tunnel or overhead pedestrian crossing is provided, then he/she should yield the way to vehicles if not using the crossroad or overhead crossing.
- Adjacent intersections where traffic control signals are working, a pedestrian should only cross the road using the marked crosswalk.
- Pedestrians should avoid crossing a roadway intersection unless official traffic control devices and given permission. When permission is provided to pedestrians by traffic control devices then only a pedestrian should cross the road.
Pedestrian control signals
If pedestrian control signals exhibiting the word WALK or DON’T WALK, or such symbols are placed, then these signals shall indicate as follows:
- A symbol or word message WALK – Pedestrians facing such signal shall cross the roadway in the direction that signal is displaying. Every vehicle should stop and remain stopped for pedestrians that are walking on such signal.
- Symbol or flashing message DON’T WALK – No pedestrian should cross the road under any circumstance if DON’T WALK signal is showed. However, pedestrians who have started walking on WALK signal should continue walking on the crossroad. Otherwise, pedestrians should stay there until the WALK signal is showed again.
It is clear that both drivers and pedestrians are confused with the word “DON’T WALK” signal. For pedestrians it is clear that they “should not start walking or crossing”. On the other hand, drivers should stay calm and on their place until people that have started crossing on WALK signal, reach at safe place.
As a pedestrian you should not forget that although the rules are in your favor because of your vulnerability on the road, yet you should never presume that the driver is always sat fault. There can be instances where drivers can prove his/her innocence and it may be you who might be at fault. Hence, it is your responsibility to be alert while on the road, and extra careful while crossing. You should not also give a chance to vehicle drivers to cause you any harm.
All in all, as a driver you should always make sure that you yield the right of way to pedestrians, so that you can altogether avoid any negative situations for yourself and for pedestrians. Be extra vigilant on the road as safety should always be your first priority. By obeying the traffic rules a lot of mishaps can be diverted and so does the legal mess that is associated with it.