When can you not cross at a crosswalk?

If you walked during the "DONT WALK" at a crosswalk then are you walking at your own risk, or is it illegal to walk if the sign says "DONT WALK"? Is there any law broken if you walk during this time?

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  • Ryan R
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Crosswalks are merely designated areas for pedestrians to cross the street, nothing more. Pedestrians may not cross against a "Do Not Walk" signal, nor may they step into traffic to use the crosswalk; they must wait until it's safe to cross.

    Source(s): My father's a traffic engineer; read any state's law on the matter
  • 1 decade ago

    It's called "Jaywalking" and there are laws against it. It's not evil, but it does impact safety.

    I wish the following 6 rules were mine, but I borrowed them from Dave's blog: http://www.hill-kleerup.org/blog/mtarchive/002675....

    Am you being stupid? By jaywalking, you’re being stupid, since you are putting yourself in harm’s way. Cars can always plough through red lights, too. But face it — you know when you’re doing something stupid, nine times out of ten. Trust those feelings. Because there’s a little stupid, and then there’s a lot stupid. The latter tends to translate, eventually, to dead.

    It’s safer, BTW, to cross at an intersection, even if not with the light. Drivers are used to paying more attention at intersections, and there’s usually some sort of quasi-safe spot within the crosswalk or in the center divider. But it’s still always at least a little stupid. Don’t be too stupid. Which leads up to …

    1. Are you taking an unnecessary chance? Most people jaywalk because they are impatient, not because it’s an emergency. Fact is, you might add no more than five or ten minutes to your walk, if that, if you take the safe, legal route. So beyond the basic chance you’re taking, consider this: Is being killed or crippled by a car is worth it if you don’t have to wait for the light to change? Do you want your family to deal with that? Or the driver that hits you? Or do you want to deal with the consequences if a driver careens out of control trying to avoid hitting you?

    If not, then reconsider your action. Or hang on there for another thirty seconds, until that speeding semi goes past.

    2. Are you factoring in delays? “Oh, I can get across the street before that car gets here!” Sure, you probably can. Unless you trip. Or slip. Or drop your cell phone, or something in your pocket falls out to the ground. Will that make you hesitate? Stop? Try to run back and recover your PalmPilot? What happens to your safety margin then?

    3. Do you know the signals and traffic flow? Much of jaywalking depends on knowing how the cars come through, knowing when it’s red there that it’s green there, and the next signal change will mean a green arrow there, and a red there. Do you know the flow on this street your crossing, or this intersection? Are you sure? Has it changed with that construction they just started? Are you sure?

    4. Jaywalking means actually paying more attention to other cars and obstacles, rather than less. It means you can’t be lazy. It means you can’t assume people will stop. It means you need to know where every car is that could reach you, when they’ll reach you, and how to avoid it. Don’t do it if you want to just read a book while you stroll.

    5. Are you making the drivers nervous? Don’t. Don’t do anything that makes drivers nervous. If a driver has to slow down to avoid hitting you, you’ve not only offended the driver, but you’ve increased the risk of something going Badly Wrong. Nervous drivers make mistakes. They punch the accelerator, thinking they can get past you before you’re in the way. They swerve, thinking they’re going to hit you. They pay attention to you, rather than to the other cars (and pedestrians). Believe me, you do not want to cause an accident just so that you could get to lunch two minutes sooner.

    At the one intersection where I don’t always cross with the light, I will not step off the curb if I can see a car coming toward me (I have about a block of visibility in either direction). Because if I can see them, then they can see me, and that’s going to make them nervous.

    Violating traffic ordinances when nobody’s around is between you and your conscience. Doing it when it impacts someone else’s drive is impolite at best, hazardous at worst. Don’t do it.

    6. Are you ready to take it like a man? If the cops spot you and give you a ticket for jaywalking, suck it up. Be polite and contrite. Don’t make excuses. Do apologize. Don’t shout about how everyone does it, and why don’t they go and catch some terrorists instead. You did the crime, now do the (money=) time.

  • 1 decade ago

    In Michigan motorists are required to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk at anytime.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I believe it is more for your own safety. Too many people run the amber light and you won't have a chance to jump out of the way in time, especially if some one starts to run the red just before it turns green

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