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Pedestrian accident safety according to the law

When was the last time your read your California Driver Handbook? Did you even read it when you took your driving test for the first time 10, 20 or 30 years ago? Even if you did read it once, way back then, it might be time to review the rules of the road. There's great information in your driver handbook that will keep you, your family and other Californians safe on the road.

Let's look at what the handbook says on pedestrians:

-- Be careful if you're driving an electric car. Your vehicle is so silent that pedestrians might not notice it coming up behind them and they might not know to get out of the way.

-- Give pedestrians the right-of-way no matter what. Pedestrians are no match for your car. Even if the pedestrian is possibly breaking the law, be careful and yield to anyone on foot.

-- Never pass cars at a crosswalk. If a car is slowing down or stopped at a crosswalk, it might be due to a pedestrian being there. Be careful and drive through crosswalks with caution.

-- Never drive on a sidewalk. If you have to cross a sidewalk, do so at designated entrances and look out for pedestrians at all times.

-- Don't stop within a crosswalk. You could block a pedestrian's path and cause him or her to step into the dangerous roadway.

-- Give deference to children, older pedestrians, pedestrians with disabilities and pedestrians walking with kids. Let them have plenty of time to get across the street to safety.

-- Obey all pedestrian road signage.

Following these pedestrian laws will prevent the vast majority of pedestrian accident injuries and deaths in California. Be careful, stay alert when you're a pedestrian as well, and if you or your loved one suffer injury in a pedestrian versus car crash, know that you may have the ability to seek financial compensation for your injuries in California civil court.

Source: State of California Department of Motor Vehicles, "California Driver Handbook - Laws and Rules of the Road," accessed April 07, 2017

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