Even if they may not realize it, simply walking alongside traffic can put pedestrians at risk. Pedestrian accidents often result from a driver’s actions. However, pedestrians can also be held liable when they disregard traffic laws or knowingly put themselves in danger.
Kentucky’s right of way laws
Given that a motor vehicle can cause significantly more damage to a pedestrian than the driver, the person operating the vehicle should generally slow down and give way. This helps reduce the risk of accidents and promotes the safety of everyone on the road.
In general, motorists are expected to yield to pedestrians who are:
- Walking on the sidewalk
- Crossing at a marked or unmarked crosswalk at an intersection
- Crossing the roadway that has no installed or working traffic control signals
While pedestrians in Kentucky typically have the right of way, there are still some exceptions. Drivers must do what they can to avoid colliding with a person. However, it is still crucial to recognize that pedestrians put themselves at risk when they disregard traffic regulations.
Pedestrians can lower their chance of being involved in an accident by being alert and understanding the rules of the road. In Kentucky, pedestrians must yield to drivers in the following situations:
- When crossing outside a marked or unmarked crosswalk at an intersection
- Crossing a roadway when there is an available pedestrian tunnel or overpass
- When at a marked crosswalk without installed or working traffic control signals
- Walking on the roadway when there is a sidewalk available
Although the law may seem to favor pedestrians, this does not give them the authority to be careless on the road. They should still observe traffic signals and avoid crossing the street when under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Both a driver and pedestrian can be held liable for causing an accident.
Though pedestrians may still recover compensation from the driver, their role in causing the accident can lessen the amount. Seeking legal counsel may provide a better understanding of what steps to take next.