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Turning cars often do not wait for runners to cross the street

| May 19, 2021 | Pedestrian Accidents |

At many intersections, drivers are allowed to turn right on red after checking for traffic. If there’s a flashing light, they may also be allowed to turn left.

This can be problematic for runners. Typically, a driver who is turning will look for other cars first and pedestrians second. Some drivers fail to look for pedestrians at all. If you’re running, you may be yards away from the crosswalk when you get the cross signal, and that driver may never see you.

What this means is that runners often go out into the crosswalk, legally going across the street with the signal, only to find that a driver is turning right through the crosswalk. This is not the runner’s fault, but he or she is certainly at greater risk in such an accident.

Why does this keep happening?

The person crossing the road definitely has the right of way when they have the cross symbol. Drivers have to wait and then turn. So why do they often fail to do so?

A big reason is that a percentage of drivers do not look for pedestrians in the crosswalk. They’re so focused on avoiding an accident with another car that they forget that drivers aren’t the only people using the road.

Those who do look still have to make judgment calls. How much space do they have? How long will the turn take? How fast is the pedestrian running? When they get it wrong, accidents happen, and injured pedestrians need to know how to seek compensation for medical bills and other costs.

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