When Does a Pedestrian Have the Right-of-Way?

Understanding who has the right of way – pedestrian or driver – is vital to assessing liability. Generally, the right of way belongs to pedestrians, and drivers owe those on foot a duty to exercise caution and avoid hitting them, per Texas Transportation Code § 552.008 and the Code of Ordinances City of Denton, Texas § 18-36(j).

Drivers must come to a complete stop if needed to avoid a collision, use their horns to warn of the car’s presence, and remain aware of children or other individuals near the roadway who may not possess the ability to keep themselves safe, such as the visually impaired. Additionally, drivers must yield to those on foot when they have the right-of-way.

Pedestrians have the right-of-way when:

  • A control signal displays “walk”
  • The pedestrian has the green light
  • There are no traffic controls, but the pedestrian is on the driver’s side of the road or about to enter their half of the roadway
  • When a vehicle crosses a sidewalk while exiting an alley, private road, or driveway

If another vehicle has come to a full stop to accommodate pedestrians, other vehicles must also yield, as it is a misdemeanor offense to circumvent the stopped car. If a driver strikes a pedestrian because they failed to yield, a local attorney could hold them liable for the resulting damages.

Who Is Most Likely to be Involved in a Pedestrian Accident?

The two groups of people most likely to be hit by a car, truck, or bike while on foot are senior citizens and children. A seasoned lawyer in Denton could offer more insight into what makes these people more vulnerable in pedestrian accidents.

Elderly People

Older people are less mobile, and the lower their mobility is, the harder it is for them to evade a car. In other words, an elderly person with limited mobility is not going to be able to jump out of the way of a car. Additionally, many elderly people have poor eyesight and may not see a moving car quickly enough to react.


Children are more likely to get hit by a vehicle than the adult population because they are smaller and less visible to cars. Pedestrian accidents are particularly dangerous for children because they have less mass to absorb an impact, whereas an adult can probably take a larger hit because of their size. This size component often equates to larger or more significant injuries to children, sometimes killing them. Another thing is children just aren’t as aware of their surroundings as adults are.

Compounded by them being “off in their own world” when playing, it can be a recipe for disaster. Furthermore, high school students in and around Denton tend to be less cautious about crossing the road at the appropriate times and places, leading to frequent instances of jaywalking. They are often experiencing freedom for the first time at an age where they are prone to take more risks, placing them at greater risk of being involved in a pedestrian accident.

Denton Requirements for People Walking

The Texas Transportation Code also places several obligations on pedestrians. For example, foot travelers must follow traffic control mechanisms and walk signs. People traveling on foot may not suddenly step out into traffic, even if they enter a crosswalk, and they must utilize tunnels and overhead walkways intended to maximize their safety when available. Similarly, where a road has sidewalks, state law requires pedestrians to use them. If a person walking violated these regulations at the time of the collision, they could be held partially liable for their injuries, making it difficult for a Denton pedestrian accident attorney to help them recover full compensation.

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Seeking Compensation from Negligent Motorists

Despite all these laws, pedestrians are still at risk of harm caused by driver distraction, intoxication, negligence, and refusal to yield. In these instances, those on foot may suffer catastrophic injuries and desperately need compensation to pay expenses and put their lives back on track. To determine who is responsible for an accident involving a pedestrian, skilled lawyers in Denton could collect important evidence by:

  • Investigating the scene
  • Interviewing witnesses
  • Reviewing police reports, medical records, and other associated documentation
  • Engaging accident reconstruction experts

Using this evidence, a legal professional could negotiate with insurance companies or build a strong case for trial to ensure the claimant is properly compensated. Legal restitution could include economic, non-economic, and punitive damages, as per Texas Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 41.001 -.014.


Call a Denton Pedestrian Accident Attorney Now

Every car-pedestrian collision is different. However, the injuries sustained by a pedestrian when hit by a car are more often severe, if not deadly, and warrant substantial compensation. A Denton pedestrian accident lawyer could explain your options and work hard for the best resolution for your situation. To get started, call our office today and schedule a free consultation.

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Get The Help You Need Contact McCraw Law Group

If you are in need of a personal injury attorney in North Texas, please contact the team at McCraw Law Group today. We are ready to help you in a broad range of serious accident and injury legal issues, and offer multiple ways to reach us.

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If you are in need of a personal injury attorney in North Texas, please contact the team at McCraw Law Group today. We are ready to help you in a broad range of serious accident and injury legal issues, and offer multiple ways to reach us.

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