Pedestrian Crosswalk Laws in Illinois
Pedestrian accidents can cause serious injuries and fatalities. Most jurisdictions take steps necessary to keep pedestrians safe such as installing lights and crosswalks. Unfortunately, these protections do not always work. All too often, careless or negligent drivers cause harm to pedestrians. During the latest reporting year in Illinois, there were 4,940 pedestrian crashes. Out of those, there were:
- 148 fatal crashes
- 4,663 injury crashes
The majority of pedestrian crashes occurred on urban roadways. Looking at those numbers, you can see that nearly every pedestrian crash that occurs causes an injury or a fatality. Crosswalk laws are important. It is vital that both pedestrians and drivers know and understand their responsibilities on Illinois roadways.
Who has the Right-of-Way at a Crosswalk?
In the Illinois code of law, pedestrians generally have the right-of-way, but there are exceptions to this. When there are traffic signals in place and in operation at marked crosswalks, pedestrians must use them. Not using a crosswalk when one is present could mean that the pedestrian is at-fault if an accident occurs.
Under 625 ILCS 5/11-1002(a), “[…] the driver of a vehicle shall stop and yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within a crosswalk when the pedestrian is upon the half of the roadway upon which the vehicle is traveling, or when the pedestrian is approaching so closely from the opposite half of the roadway as to be in danger.”
When a vehicle is stopped at a crosswalk and a person is crossing the road, the driver of any vehicle approaching from the rear must also stop. They cannot overtake or pass a stopped vehicle.
Is Jaywalking Illegal in Illinois?
Pedestrians cannot suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a moving vehicle in Illinois. When crossing in areas that do not have a crosswalk, pedestrians must yield the right-of-way to vehicles.
Most jurisdictions in Illinois have laws about pedestrians illegally crossing the street. This can include:
- Crossing outside of a crosswalk when one is available
- Crossing against a signal
- Walking on a roadway while impaired
- Failing to use a sidewalk when one is available
- Walking along highways or interstates where pedestrians are not allowed
- Soliciting business or contributions on the roadside
Not only can the above-listed activities lead to fines, but they can also cause serious pedestrian injuries. If you or a loved one were injured in a pedestrian accident, contact us. Horwitz Horwitz & Associates offers free consultations with our pedestrian accident lawyers to help you explore your legal options.
Is Blocking a Crosswalk Illegal?
It is illegal to block a crosswalk. Most jurisdictions throughout Illinois have laws in place regarding blocking pedestrian crosswalks.
Common Pedestrian Accident Injuries
The average passenger vehicle weighs 4,000 pounds. Even at slower speeds, they can inflict serious damage to the human body. It is not uncommon for us to see the following injuries as a result of a pedestrian versus vehicle crash:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Bone fractures
- Loss of or damage to a bodily organ
- Spinal cord injuries
- Dismemberment or amputation
- Significant disfigurement
- Other injuries that inhibit a person’s daily activities
Each of these injuries required medical attention. Even minor pedestrian accident injuries can lead to major medical expenses. During the latest reporting year in Illinois, 1,061 of the pedestrian injury crashes were considered incapacitating (A-injuries). In many cases, victims of pedestrian crashes suffer from short or long term disabilities. This can lead to a loss of income as well as emotional and psychological damages.