Crosswalks: Vehicles vs. Pedestrians


In order to obtain a drivers license in Wisconsin, new drivers must first pass a written test, then a road test.  Over a period of time, many drivers become complacent or just "forget"  some of the traffic laws.  For instance, I have pulled drivers over for passing school busses while the red lights are flashing and the stop arm is activated.  The excuses given are "I thought only cars behind the bus had to stop" or "I saw that the kids had already gotten on the bus". 

With summer months here, we see more pedestrians and bicyclists on the road.  This means drivers need to be more aware of their surroundings.  Remember, it is the responsibility of the driver to stop at a crosswalk to safely allow pedestrians/bicyclists to cross.  This pertains to crosswalks at controlled (signals) or uncontrolled intersections.  In turn, pedestrians/bicyclists have a responsibility to refrain from entering an intersection when any approaching vehicles would not be able to stop safely.

Another tip regarding crosswalks, when approaching a red light at an intersection, you must stop behind the crosswalk.  Allow pedestrians to cross the roadway safely without having to walk outside of the painted lines.  Further, many signals are activated by sensors beneath the roadway.  If a vehicle is in a crosswalk and not behind the line, the sensors may not be activated and the signals may not change in a timely fashion. 

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