The Santa Monica Police Department has been campaigning to curb pedestrian accidents. As part of that ongoing effort, during the month of March, the police department will be targeting drivers who fail to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks.
The police department will be enforcing California Vehicle Code Section 21950, Right-of-Way at Crosswalks, which states:
(a) The driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within any marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection, except as otherwise provided in this chapter.
(b) This section does not relieve a pedestrian from the duty of using due care for his or her safety. No pedestrian may suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a vehicle that is so close as to constitute an immediate hazard. No pedestrian may unnecessarily stop or delay traffic while in a marked or unmarked crosswalk.
(c) The driver of a vehicle approaching a pedestrian within any marked or unmarked crosswalk shall exercise all due care and shall reduce the speed of the vehicle or take any other action relating to the operation of the vehicle as necessary to safeguard the safety of the pedestrian.
(d) Subdivision (b) does not relieve a driver of a vehicle from the duty of exercising due care for the safety of any pedestrian within any marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection.
In 2010, there were 113 car accidents involving pedestrians in Santa Monica. Through October of 2011, there were 97 car accidents involving pedestrians. Distracted drivers and distracted pedestrians are often the cause of a pedestrian v. vehicle accident, with cell phones or headphones being one of the most common distracters.
If you have been injured in a pedestrian accident, speak with a Santa Monica personal injury attorney at McGee, Lerer & Associates for a free consultation. We can discuss the compensation to which you are entitled, and whether you may be tagged with any liability for the accident.