Pedestrian Rights and Responsibilities


Have you ever wondered what the laws are that govern pedestrian crossing? Such as, “Who has the right of way?” This is a good question. Undoubtedly this question comes to mind when you are insisting on the right of way as a driver or insisting on the right of way when traveling on foot. But, here is what the law has to say.


Article 27, Sections 1150–1157 of New York Vehicle and Traffic Law (NYS VTL§§ 1150–1157) details when pedestrians have the right of way. The law subjects pedestrians to the same traffic signals as cars. These laws are designed to keep safe those traveling by foot. Naturally, pedestrians are less protected than someone driving a car. As the law shows, pedestrians do not always have the right of way.


Pedestrians have the right of way when they are using a crosswalk that has no traffic signals. Even so, a pedestrian cannot cross the street when doing so would make it unreasonable for an approaching car to yield or stop for them. Doing so would put both the driver and pedestrian in harms way.

Pedestrians, however, do not have the right or way when they cross the road instead of using a designated tunnel or overpass. (VTL § 1151). Choosing to do this is a poor choice that can place a pedestrian at high risk for injury.


Cars have the right of way when no crosswalks are available for pedestrians to use. (VTL § 1152).


Always stay to the right of the crosswalk whenever possible. (VTL § 1155). Not only is it unsafe to walk on the road, but illegal to do so when a sidewalk is available and safe to use. However, when there is no sidewalk be safe by walking on the shoulder of the road, towards oncoming traffic. (VTL § 1156). Drivers, keep in mind that it is illegal speed up and pass a car that is stopped for a pedestrian crossing the street via a crosswalk. Pedestrians and driver, remember: just because you can does not mean you should. Be courteous whenever possible.

Do you have a pending traffic ticket? Call Elisa Claro Esq, of The Claro Law Firm today and let her represent you.  She is an experienced traffic lawyer who has handed thousands of traffic cases. As such, Elisa’s experience as a traffic attorney gives her personal familiarity with many of the police officers, assistant district attorneys, and city, town, and village prosecutors. In making the right decision to hire our traffic ticket laws firm, think of all the money you will save in increased auto insurance premiums, fines, fees and points which become a permanent part of your driving record.  Call The Claro Law Firm today at 917 300-3334 or visit us online. The Claro Law Firm handles traffic tickets throughout all of New York State, including Dutchess, Orange, and Rockland Counties. And Westchester County, including Port Chester, Yonkers, and Greenburgh.

Avvo Clients' Choice Award 2018
Avvo Clients' Choice Award 2017
Contact Information