August 7, 2018
After battling a winter that tested evened the most seasoned Ohioan, the people of Ohio are finally able to walk outside and enjoy the sun. But, while you’re enjoying your stroll, do understand that pedestrians, any natural person afoot, must exercise caution whenever around motor vehicles, and need to be aware of driver whose inattentiveness or actions may cause a clear and present danger. In the Ohio Revised Code, Chapter 4511, regarding motor vehicle laws, the definite rights, duties, and responsibilities in traffic are explained thoroughly. This article will condense them into a summary of things all pedestrians need to know.
One of the most basic laws for pedestrians is obeying traffic control devices and pedestrian controlled signals. Any traffic-controlled devices, such as sign and signals, placed along a roadway shall not be disobeyed. This includes sign like walk on left facing traffic, no pedestrian crossing, no hitch hiking, and many others. Where special pedestrian control signals exist, pedestrians will be guided to walk, when a symbol of a walking person appears, and shall be given the right of way by the drives of all other vehicles or to wait, when a symbol of an upturned palm appears, and may not start to cross the roadway when facing in the direction of the symbol. Pedestrians shall always have the right of way and drivers must stop their vehicle immediately prior to driving onto any sidewalk or sidewalk area that extends across the road or alley upon which they are driving. One of the most important laws that comes up in the Ohio Revised Code is when there is no crosswalk available, the pedestrian must yield the right of way to all traffic upon the roadway, even though this is contrary to popular belief. Highways and freeways should be avoided if you are walking, and no pedestrian is permitted within the limits of the right of way of a freeway, except within a rest area, in the performance of public works, or as a result of an emergency or a breakdown of a motor vehicle. Just as motor vehicles do, pedestrians shall move, when practicable, on the right half of crosswalks when crossing the street, as well as when facing other pedestrians. If there is no sidewalk provided, pedestrians shall walk only on a shoulder a far as practicable from the edge of the roadway. Soliciting a ride from a driver while on a roadway while outside of a safety zone or standing on a highway to solicit business or contributions is forbidden.
Again, there are numerous laws about how pedestrians should move about in their everyday lives, but if you stay to the right of sidewalks when provided, follow all traffic signals when they are available, and use cautions when either of the two are not available you will be safe and abiding with the laws set in place in Ohio. So, enjoy the fresh air and sunshine while it is available, because fall is right around the corner, which means winter is coming once again.
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