Despite there being fewer people out and about, less traffic on the roads, 2020 saw more pedestrian fatalities than any year prior, according to the Governors Highway Safety Association. In fact, the numbers have been steadily rising over the last 10 years. Today 17% of all traffic-related deaths are pedestrians.
Drivers and pedestrians that are not vigilant and cautious while on or near the road make it more dangerous for everyone. Knowing how the law defines who has the right-of-way in a given situation may not protect you from unsafe drivers, but it can help you make sure you are doing your part to stay safe.
More than that, it can help you protect your rights and the rights of your loved ones in case the unthinkable happens. Read more to see how the law handles right-of-way in your state and what you can do to stay safe and to protect yourself.
Right-of-way laws can be complicated and can vary from place to place. Even when you know the appropriate laws in your area, not everybody does. Whether or not you believe you have the right-of-way as a driver of a pedestrian, it is always best to practice caution and be aware of everyone around you. Never assume someone else will yield to you.
Knowing how the law works for or against you becomes much more important if you’ve been in an accident. These laws help courts and insurance companies determine who may have been at fault for an accident.
If you or a loved one is part of an accident, it is important that after you’ve sought out appropriate medical care that you also seek out appropriate legal care. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you better understand how the law applies to your situation and can protect you and your rights from greedy insurance companies.
In Ohio, there are situations that give the right-of-way to both drivers and pedestrians. Having a basic understanding of these laws can help to keep you and your loved ones safe on or near the roadways.
If you’ve been in an accident, these laws can help you understand where the fault lies and whether you have the right to pursue damages to help you move past that accident.
At the most basic level, pedestrians are expected to stay on sidewalks when available. When not available, pedestrians should stay on the shoulder of the road as far from the lane lines as possible and practical. Below are some of the laws dictating right-of-way in Ohio.
Pedestrians Have the Right-of-Way:
In the following situations, Ohio state law gives the right-of-way to pedestrians over vehicles. Remember, that even though the law is on your side, never assume the other people on the road will yield. Stay safe.
- On all sidewalks
- The driver of a vehicle emerging from an alley, building, private road, or driveway shall stop the vehicle immediately prior to driving on a sidewalk.
- On any marked crosswalk when traffic control signals indicate
- On any marked crosswalk when traffic control signals are not in place or in operation
- On any marked crosswalk when a car has stopped to allow a pedestrian to pass, no other vehicle may pass the stopped car from behind
- Blind pedestrians with a cane or guide dog are ALWAYS given the right-of-way
Drivers Have the Right-of-Way:
In the following situations, Ohio state law gives the right-of-way to drivers over pedestrians. Remember, that even though the law is on your side, never assume the other people on the road will yield. Stay safe.
- Whenever a pedestrian is crossing outside of a marked crosswalk
- At a marked crosswalk when traffic control signals do not indicate a crossing
- Pedestrians should not cross an intersection diagonally or against any control devices, and are not granted the right-of-way if they do so
- Pedestrians waiting to enter a crosswalk must yield to vehicles traveling on the roadway
- All vehicles in a funeral procession
- Public safety vehicles with sirens sounding and lights flashing
Injuries Caused When Cars Hit Pedestrians
When drivers don’t understand or abide by these right-of-way laws, they put pedestrians at serious risk. While death is a possible outcome of these types of pedestrian accidents, there are plenty of other serious injuries you could incur if you are the victim of negligent driving.
These are some of the most common injuries you might suffer. Some can be life-altering, others can be extremely costly to treat. Either way, if you are in an accident, seek medical attention right away to make sure you stay safe.
- Pelvic injuries are extremely common in these accidents
- Head traumas are both common and extremely dangerous
- Neck and spinal cord injuries from these accidents often lead to long-term health issues
- Internal injuries are dangerous because you don’t always know the extent of your injuries unless you’re examined properly
Regardless of the type or severity of your injuries, it is imperative that you get checked out by a medical professional. You may also want to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney to better understand both the cost of your injuries over the long term and to explore any potential damages you may be owed.
How We Can Help
When you call our office, you’ll get a free consultation. During that conversation, we’ll review the facts of your case, get to know you and your family, and determine how we can best help you get what you are owed.
Every case is different, just as every family is different. We will tailor a service that best matches your needs, your goals, and your unique circumstances.
Many of these types of cases are settled out of court with insurance companies. Those that aren’t, go to court. Not only are the partners at Spivak and Sakelleriou skilled and experienced negotiators, but we are also trial lawyers with decades of experience between us.
You can feel confident with us either in the conference room or the courthouse. Our approach is simple, we take the time to listen to every client’s unique needs. We believe that individual attention and deep empathy help empower us to get the best results for everyone that walks through our doors.
We understand that nobody wants to be in your position. It can be a very difficult time. Our goal is to help you navigate those unpleasant waters to help you get what you deserve and move on with your life without the unfair financial burdens that can make it difficult to do that.
Insurance companies and adjusters are masters at negotiation. It pays for them to pay out as little as possible and they spend a lot of time and money ensuring that they are positioned to do just that.
Compensation in these cases often depends on the amount of fault that is ascribed to each involved party.
An insurance company will try to argue that the percentage of fault falling on your shoulders is as high as possible to lower the amount they owe. Without a deep understanding of how the law defines fault, it can be difficult to argue those numbers.
When you negotiate a settlement with these professionals, it is important that you bring a professional of your own. That is where we come in. Our attorneys have been solely focused on personal injury cases like yours since our firm was founded. We’ve negotiated hundreds of settlements for our clients and have a proven track record of results and satisfied clients.
Don’t Wait to Get Help
The sooner you call us to talk about your accident, the better. Insurance companies have a playbook of dirty tricks they can employ to keep you from receiving the compensation you deserve. If you don’t know what’s coming, you can’t protect yourself, your family, or your rights.
As soon as you’ve been treated for the injuries you may have sustained in your accident, give us a call before it’s too late.