Las Vegas is famous for its nightlife and walkability – especially down The Strip. Yet it is not always known for pedestrian safety. Pedestrians face many dangers while walking in Las Vegas, such as distracted and intoxicated drivers. Before you take a trip to Las Vegas, learn some pedestrian safety tips to reduce your risk of getting involved in a serious pedestrian accident.
Walk in Safe Places
First, know where to walk. Walking in or near the road can dramatically increase your risk of getting hit by a car or clipped by a vehicle’s side mirror. Always keep to sidewalks in Las Vegas, when possible. Do not leave a sidewalk, curb or another place of safety and step into the road unless it is safe to do so and you have the right-of-way. Safe zones for pedestrians are:
- Painted crosswalks
- Crosswalks with lights or signals
- Pedestrian walkways
- Pedestrian bridges and tunnels
- Well-lit areas
If there is no sidewalk, walk as close to the left-hand side of the street (the side facing opposite traffic) as possible. Return to a sidewalk or pedestrian pathway at the earliest opportunity. Only cross the road at intersections and marked crosswalks, and only when the signal tells you to proceed.
Know Pedestrian Right-of-Way Laws
Do not assume that you always or automatically have the right-of-way as a pedestrian in Las Vegas. Under state law, pedestrians must yield the right-of-way to motor vehicle drivers in many situations. A pedestrian only has the right-of-way in a crosswalk or at an unmarked intersection. At a marked intersection with a traffic control signal, pedestrians must wait until they are given the Walk sign to proceed. Pedestrians have a duty to obey all traffic-control signals and devices. They cannot suddenly walk into the path of an oncoming vehicle that is too close to stop.
Make Eye Contact Before Crossing
Even if you have the right-of-way, do not assume that a driver will stop or yield to you. Look left, right, then left again for oncoming vehicles. Cross the street only when you receive the signal and there are no oncoming cars. If a vehicle is approaching the crosswalk or intersection, wait for it to come to a complete stop before entering the street. Make eye contact with the driver to ensure that he or she sees you. Stay out of the driver’s blind spot.
Improving your visibility as a pedestrian will enhance your safety. Make yourself as easy as possible for drivers to see when walking around Las Vegas by wearing bright clothes. Avoid walking around at night, but if you must, wear reflective clothing and carry a flashlight. Walk only in permitted areas and follow traffic laws to keep your movements predictable. Remaining where drivers expect to see pedestrians can decrease the risk of a collision.
Don’t Walk While Distracted or Intoxicated
Stay alert and vigilant at all times while walking in Las Vegas. Drivers make too many mistakes for you to let your guard down. Be on the lookout for drunk, distracted and inexperienced drivers who may break the rules and endanger your life as a pedestrian. Do not walk while distracted, texting, looking down at a phone, listening to music or intoxicated.
If you get injured in a pedestrian accident in Las Vegas, contact an attorney at Koch & Brim, LLP for a free case consultation. You may be eligible for compensation.