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Crosswalk capers

Matt:

Would you please clarify the "Pedestrian has the right of way" rule before I kill somebody? If I get to an intersection in my car and a pedestrian is waiting, I let the pedestrian cross. If another pedestrian arrives at the intersection before I have a chance to go, does this pedestrian have the right of way too, or is it my turn to go? I could envision a endless stream of pedestrian arrivals all getting there after I did preventing me from moving. Until I get an answer, tell the elves they're in danger.

-- Impatient East Coast Driver

Would somebody go down to the corner and check for Impatient and let him know he has his answer? He'll be the one at the stop line with four flat tires and vines growing over the hood. Respect for pedestrians hardly exists these days, but just because there's a pedestrian somewhere in the neighborhood doesn't mean you have to stop and wait. But stop. Wait. Before you get too big a sense of power, here's the law.

As well as any of this can be put down on paper, the CA Vehicle Code section 21950 covers most of it. Once the pedestrian is off the curb and into the crosswalk (marked or unmarked), drivers have to yield. Pedestrians standing on the curb wondering whether it's worth their life to cross the street don't count. You don't have to wait for them to make up their minds. Jaywalkers? Crosswalk walkers who charge across the street into a stream of traffic? They have to yield to auto traffic, though obviously drivers have to make some effort to avoid them. One exception to the off-the-curb rule is if there is a pedestrian safety island between the two directions of traffic, like on El Cajon Boulevard. If the pedestrian can reach the island before they reach you, you can proceed.

Unfortunately, most of these rules come into play as guidelines in court. In real life, everybody is supposed to look out for everybody else's well-being based on an evaluation of the immediate situation. You can never assume everybody else knows the law. And no, you can't even nudge those irritating teenagers who don't have their own cars but know they can exercise some power by crossing the street as slowly as possible and with way too much attitude.

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Matt:

Would you please clarify the "Pedestrian has the right of way" rule before I kill somebody? If I get to an intersection in my car and a pedestrian is waiting, I let the pedestrian cross. If another pedestrian arrives at the intersection before I have a chance to go, does this pedestrian have the right of way too, or is it my turn to go? I could envision a endless stream of pedestrian arrivals all getting there after I did preventing me from moving. Until I get an answer, tell the elves they're in danger.

-- Impatient East Coast Driver

Would somebody go down to the corner and check for Impatient and let him know he has his answer? He'll be the one at the stop line with four flat tires and vines growing over the hood. Respect for pedestrians hardly exists these days, but just because there's a pedestrian somewhere in the neighborhood doesn't mean you have to stop and wait. But stop. Wait. Before you get too big a sense of power, here's the law.

As well as any of this can be put down on paper, the CA Vehicle Code section 21950 covers most of it. Once the pedestrian is off the curb and into the crosswalk (marked or unmarked), drivers have to yield. Pedestrians standing on the curb wondering whether it's worth their life to cross the street don't count. You don't have to wait for them to make up their minds. Jaywalkers? Crosswalk walkers who charge across the street into a stream of traffic? They have to yield to auto traffic, though obviously drivers have to make some effort to avoid them. One exception to the off-the-curb rule is if there is a pedestrian safety island between the two directions of traffic, like on El Cajon Boulevard. If the pedestrian can reach the island before they reach you, you can proceed.

Unfortunately, most of these rules come into play as guidelines in court. In real life, everybody is supposed to look out for everybody else's well-being based on an evaluation of the immediate situation. You can never assume everybody else knows the law. And no, you can't even nudge those irritating teenagers who don't have their own cars but know they can exercise some power by crossing the street as slowly as possible and with way too much attitude.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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