Crosswalks are marked at intersections to allow pedestrians to cross busy roads and improve walkability. Because crosswalks can cause some conflict between pedestrians and drivers, here are some tips that can help both navigate crosswalks safely and effectively. Please be aware: Pennsylvania law states that drivers must yield to pedestrians in crosswalks and at intersections.
When walking on the street, make sure to cross at marked crosswalks or street corners and be aware of traffic signals. Crossing mid-block can cause injuries and increase the likelihood of an accident. You forfeit your rights as a pedestrian if you cross anywhere other than a crosswalk. Pedestrians should also not assume that drivers will see them or yield. Look left, right, and left again before stepping out. If a driver waves you on, do not cross until you verify that all traffic has stopped. Be especially careful at intersections where drivers may be turning and fail to yield the right of way. Wearing bright, reflective clothes and walking on the sidewalk whenever possible also helps keep you safe. If no sidewalk is provided, it is usually safer to walk facing road traffic and as far left as possible. Avoid distractions such as texting and walking.
Drivers should always yield to pedestrians in crosswalks and at intersections. Be prepared to stop at all marked crosswalks, and reduce speed around these areas. Come to a complete stop if pedestrians are crossing or preparing to cross. Before resuming travel, wait until pedestrians have crossed at least one lane past the lane you are in. Be aware of children, as they may dart out in the street at any time. Use caution around school zones and residential neighborhoods for this reason. Do not drive distracted, such as using a cellphone or eating and drinking while driving. Make sure to follow the speed limit, which can help increase the driver’s ability to see and watch for pedestrians. Never drink and drive, as drinking can significantly reduce cognitive ability and increase the risk of having an accident.