Illinois laws require drivers to stop and yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within a crosswalk. Now that school back in session, crosswalk safety is even important, especially around school zones. Both drivers and pedestrians must be vigilant to keep everyone safe on our streets.
Changing the culture from motorist-focused to more pedestrian-friendly involves everyone promoting awareness of crosswalk safety. Please share the following tips with your friends, family, and children.
Safety Tips for Drivers
Drivers should always yield to pedestrians at crosswalks and intersections:
- Be prepared to stop at all crosswalks.
- Never pass another vehicle stopped or slowing down at a crosswalk.
- Come to a complete stop when pedestrians are crossing the crosswalk.
- Obey speed limits.
- Look out for signs that let you know you are near a crosswalk.
- Drivers must yield to pedestrians with clearly visible disabilities.
“Stopping to let someone cross the street at a crosswalk adds less than one minute to your commute,” said Officer Jerry Schomer. “Making sure someone crosses safely far outweighs any added drive time.”
Safety Tips for Pedestrians
For their safety, pedestrians are expected to use extra caution when crossing the street:
- Cross the street at the crosswalk only and follow walk signals.
- Look left, then right, and left again before you cross. That second look left is important to help you confirm there is no oncoming traffic in the lane closest to you. It can be difficult for traffic to stop if you step out in that lane without looking properly.
- Make sure the driver comes to a complete stop before you cross.
- Attempt to make eye contact with motorists before crossing a crosswalk.
- Remember a slow-moving vehicle does not necessarily mean the driver sees you.
- Before you cross, look for signs that indicate a stopped vehicle is about to move—look at the vehicle’s lights, listen for any sounds that could indicate the vehicle may move soon, and look to see if the wheels on the vehicle are moving.