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Typically, pedestrians are not held liable for pedestrian accidents, but that is not always the case. When individuals fail to follow traffic laws for pedestrians in Raleigh, people put themselves at risk for injuries, as well as putting themselves at risk for being held liable for those injuries. Pedestrians generally are supposed to keep a lookout. North Carolina is one of the few states that have contributory negligence, so pedestrians have a general duty to look where they are going and pay attention. Even if they are in the crosswalk and rightfully, have the right of way, there is still a duty to kind of keep a lookout. If an individual has been injured in a pedestrian accident, they should speak with a capable pedestrian accident lawyer that could try to disprove the injured party’s liability and advocate for them.

How do Traffic Laws Apply to Pedestrians?

The traffic laws typically apply to pedestrians. For example, if an individual is at an intersection controlled by a red light, there are also oftentimes signals that share when the pedestrian can go or should wait. A red X means do not cross. Generally as a pedestrian, one would want to follow those signs just like the drivers have to follow red lights and green lights. There are also rules about which side of the road to walk on and wearing reflective clothing, if possible. There are other traffic rules that apply if an individual is a pedestrian and not driving.

General traffic laws differ from traffic laws for pedestrians in Raleigh because pedestrians have a duty to keep a lookout. They are also more vulnerable as a pedestrian than a vehicle, so the laws are intended to keep a pedestrian safe as much as anything. There are no speed limits that apply, but a pedestrian generally needs to be aware of their surroundings and pay attention.

Reasons to Follow Traffic Laws

Traffic laws for pedestrians in Raleigh are important because they are intended to keep one safe. Keeping a lookout before crossing a road, making sure it can be done safely, paying attention to whether they have a walk signal or a wait signal are all helpful in keeping pedestrians safe.

A pedestrian can impact a case because of contributory negligence in North Carolina. If a pedestrian does not follow the law and it is determined that they contributed to the wreck or whatever happened, even if they were only 1% at fault, it can be a complete bar to recovery. It is a harsh outcome.

Contributory Negligence

If an individual did not have the walk signal, the driver had a green light, and the pedestrian crossed the road anyway, it could be an example of contributing that would be a bar to recovery. When one is walking along a roadway that does not have a sidewalk, they are supposed to walk facing oncoming traffic and be aware of a car that is coming.

If one is not walking safely in traffic, perhaps they are walking with traffic, in black clothes, and in the middle of the road, it is a situation where it might be determined that the pedestrian was at fault for the wreck. In almost every state, if a pedestrian does something wrong the damages would be reduced by the amount the pedestrian was at fault. In North Carolina, because it is contributory negligence, no matter to what extent the pedestrian is at fault, it is a bar to any sort of recovery. It is vital that an individual observe traffic laws for pedestrians in Raleigh in order to avoid liability in accidents. In the event that someone has been involved in a pedestrian accident, they should consult with a qualified attorney that could help them build their personal injury claim.