Oregon is known for many things: breathtaking scenery, great college football, the Oregon Trail, and our world famous beer. What you may not be as knowledgeable about are the pedestrian rights in Oregon and how they affect daily activities like driving, bicycling, and even walking across the street at lunch for a latte.

Most Oregonians are woefully unaware of the laws that govern our roads. This lack of knowledge can, unfortunately, have drastic consequences in the event of a Beaverton pedestrian accident. Oregon law stipulates that there is a crosswalk at every public street intersection, whether it is marked or not. A marked intersection is one conveniently marked with paint on the road, and “defined” for the benefit of both motorists and pedestrians. An unmarked intersection is exactly what it sounds like–there is no paint on the road to indicate boundaries; these intersections can be located in large cities, small towns, and rural areas—anywhere drivable.

A Beaverton pedestrian accident lawyer will tell you that obeying the safety buffer when turning at a stop light is incredibly important for the safety of motorists and pedestrians alike. This simple law is one of the most frequently broken crosswalk laws and is often cited in traffic accidents. When turning at a signal you should stop completely for pedestrians, and wait for them to clear your lane plus six feet before proceeding.

At mid-block or unmarked crosswalks you must wait for the pedestrians to clear your lane and at least the lane next to it. You must also stop for students per the directions of a crossing guard. Stop and remain stopped for blind pedestrians using white canes and/or guide dogs until they have completely exited the roadway. Failure to obey the traffic laws and yield to pedestrians may result in a fine of $250 or more.

Oregon law is also clear about the specific incidences of pedestrians failing to obey traffic signals and entering traffic. Pedestrians facing a red light do not have the right of way, and must wait for the signal to turn. A steady yellow light is similar, and also forbids pedestrian movement. “Don’t Walk” or “Wait” signs are similar to red lights because they prohibit pedestrians from legally entering crosswalks.

Drivers and pedestrians share the responsibility of the road; however, as cars are large, powerful machines capable of immense damage, drivers should stay alert and cautious. Most pedestrians are involved in accidents because drivers fail to yield per the law. If you have been the driver or pedestrian in an accident and need legal counsel, contact a Beaverton personal injury lawyer for expert advice.

Oregon has comprehensive rights for bicyclists, in addition to pedestrians. As a bicycling-friendly state, Oregon attracts many people who love to walk and bike (rain or shine), and we count on our laws to protect and guide us. Whether you’re an experienced cyclist looking to brush up on safety regulations, or you’re curious about the sport, review the five rights cyclists have for more information.

If you have been involved in an accident due to a driver’s negligence regarding pedestrian right of way laws, you need the expertise of a Beaverton pedestrian accident attorney. Call today for a free consultation.