Some of the most serious injuries imaginable happen when pedestrians are struck by vehicles. In many collisions involving pedestrians, the driver of the vehicle failed to follow the law. But what do Michigan’s laws specifically say about the rights and responsibilities of drivers in relation to pedestrians?
Michigan’s Pedestrian Traffic Laws
Michigan law says that drivers must yield to pedestrians in accordance with traffic control signals. Pedestrian control signals are placed at the far end of each crosswalk, and they typically indicate a “walk” or “don’t walk” period. When pedestrians have a green or yellow light (or a walk signal), or when other signage tells drivers to yield to pedestrians, drivers must stop and give pedestrians adequate space.
In school zones, drivers must follow all traffic signals and the directions of a crossing guard. If a bus deploys its warning lights or stop signs, drivers must come to a complete stop and look out for children crossing the road.
Pedestrians should also try to cross the road only where there are designated pedestrian crossings, when they are available. They should also use sidewalks when they’re available. If a pedestrian needs to walk alongside a road without a sidewalk, authorities suggest that they do so as far as possible from the road against the flow of traffic, so the pedestrian can see oncoming traffic.
Pedestrian traffic laws in Michigan are intended to protect the safety of these vulnerable road users. When a driver breaks these traffic laws and causes a pedestrian serious injuries, they can be held responsible (both in criminal and civil courts) for the harm they’ve caused.
If you’re injured when you’re lawfully crossing the road, you can file a personal injury claim against the driver who harmed you to hold them accountable for the many costs of your injury.
What Happens When Pedestrians Are Injured at Undesignated Crossings?
The rights and responsibilities of motorists become more complicated when a pedestrian crosses the road when there aren’t designated crossings. In these situations, a driver should do everything possible to avoid hitting the pedestrian without putting themselves or other drivers at risk of serious injury.
If you’re a pedestrian who has been injured by a driver, even if you weren’t crossing at a designated crossing area, you should still consult an attorney to explore your legal options. It’s possible that the driver’s negligence caused the collision, in which case you’re owed compensation for the costs of your injury.
Why File a Personal Injury Claim After You’re Struck by a Driver?
The injuries that a pedestrian auto collision victim faces can be severe and life changing. The medical expenses alone are often overwhelming for victims, who might then be unable to work because of their injuries. These economic damages (medical bills and lost income) are included in personal injury claims, which can give the injured person the financial means they need to start rebuilding their lives.
Personal injury claims also give pedestrian collision victims the chance to demand compensation for all the non-economic damages they’ve suffered, such as pain and suffering. These damages can be more challenging to calculate than economic damages, so it’s important to work with an experienced lawyer who will fight to get the full payment you’re entitled to.
If You Need Legal Help, Contact Fieger Law
The Michigan pedestrian accident attorneys at Fieger Law have decades of experience fighting for the rights of injured victims. We know how devastating these collisions can be for pedestrians, and we put our resources and experience to work for our clients to get them the maximum compensation they deserve.
Contact Fieger Law today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation so we can help you explore your legal options.