What Are The Pedestrian Laws In Oregon?

It is crucial to understand that pedestrians do have rights in and around the roadways in Oregon. However, most people do not understand what the statutes actually say about pedestrian rights. Here, we want to review the laws that pedestrians and drivers need to know in order to remain safe on Oregon roadways.

General Pedestrian Responsibilities in Oregon

All pedestrians are responsible for ensuring roadway safety, just like others on the roadway have a duty to ensure safety as well. Under Oregon law, we can see the following general requirements for pedestrians:

  • Pedestrians cannot leave the curb or another place of safety and move into the path of an oncoming vehicle in a way that will create an immediate hazard. ORS 814.040(1)(a).
  • Pedestrians crossing the road at any point other than a crosswalk are required to yield the right of way to all vehicles. ORS 814.040(1)(b).
  • Unless specifically granted the right of way under law, pedestrians are required to yield the right of way to a vehicle on the roadway. ORS 814.040(1)(c).
  • Pedestrians must obey all bridge and railroad signals. ORS 814.030.

Rights and Responsibilities When Crossing a Road

Pedestrians have to take extra care when crossing any street in Oregon. There are specific laws related to pedestrian safety and crossing the roadway, including:

  • Crosswalks can be marked or unmarked. ORS 801.220.
  • If an intersection has a marked crosswalk, a pedestrian must use this crosswalk to cross. ORS 801.220.
  • A pedestrian does not have to have their whole body in a crosswalk to trigger the right of way owed to them by other vehicles when they are using a crosswalk. ORS 811.028(4).
  • Vehicles are required to stop and remain stopped until a pedestrian has cleared the lane the vehicle is in when a pedestrian is using a crosswalk. ORS 811.028.
  • A vehicle operator is required to stop if they approach another vehicle already stopped at a marked or unmarked crosswalk to allow a pedestrian to cross. ORS 811.028.
  • Pedestrians are required to obey all traffic control devices applicable to them. ORS 814.020.

Driver Responsibility to Pedestrians

Drivers are required to yield the right of way to any pedestrian on a sidewalk. This is particularly important when a driver is turning into or out of an alleyway, driveway, or parking lot. Additionally, all motor vehicle operators are required to stop before crossing a sidewalk and when exiting a driveway, parking lot, or alleyway.

Drivers will have committed vehicular assault of a pedestrian if they operate their vehicle recklessly and hit a pedestrian and cause physical injury. If a vehicle driver operates in a careless manner and hurts a pedestrian, they could face enhanced penalties under Oregon’s Vulnerable Roadway User law. ORS 811.135(3).

Even if a pedestrian violates vehicle code pertaining to their rights and responsibilities, this is not meant to relieve a vehicle operator from operating with due care when it comes to pedestrians.

Working With an Attorney

If you or somebody you care about has sustained an injury in a pedestrian accident caused by the actions of another driver, we encourage you to reach out to a skilled Portland pedestrian accident lawyer in Oregon as soon as possible. An attorney can use their resources to conduct a full investigation into the incident and help you recover compensation for your losses. This could include coverage of medical bills, lost income, property damage expenses, pain and suffering damages, and more.