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New Connecticut Pedestrian Law Now in Effect

Close-up of the feet of a man in black sneakers crossing a street on the zebra or pedestrian path.

A personal injury lawyer in CT provides the details you need to know

As of Oct. 1, 2021, drivers in Connecticut must yield to pedestrians who signal with their hands to indicate they want to cross a street.

The new law was created to improve communication between motorists and people who are on foot or using wheelchairs, bicycles, and other tools while on sidewalks and crossing streets, according to a FOX61 news article.

The new law also requires motorists to yield to a pedestrian if they move into a crosswalk at all. This means a driver must yield if any part of the pedestrian or object the pedestrian is using enters the crosswalk – such as a walking stick or cane, a wheelchair, crutch, bicycle, or their leashed dog.

Prior to the new law going into effect, drivers had to slow or stop, if necessary, when a pedestrian stepped off a curb or into a crosswalk.

What is the new pedestrian law in Connecticut?

According to the new law, a driver must slow or stop if the person on foot is within any portion of the crosswalk or “steps to the curb at a crosswalk’s entrance and indicated an intent to cross by raising a hand or arm to oncoming traffic.”

“The new pedestrian safety law is an important step to keep everyone safe, and ultimately save lives,” Connecticut Department of Transportation Commissioner Joseph Giulietti said. He noted pedestrian fatalities and injuries had been increasing across the country between 2009 and 2018.

Pedestrian accidents can lead to serious injuries and death. On foot, you have little to no protection when you get hit by a car, meaning your body takes the brunt of the impact.

What are common pedestrian accident injuries?

Some of the most common injuries include:

  • Neck injuries, facial injuries, head injuries, and traumatic brain injuries, such as concussions.
  • Injuries to the upper extremities, such as broken bones (fractures) and injuries to the arms, wrists, hands and chest.
  • Spinal cord injuries, which can cause partial or permanent paralysis and have a life-changing impact on the victim.

Drivers should always be attentive but should show extra caution when approaching crosswalks or when pedestrians are sharing the road.

Some of the factors that lead to pedestrian accidents include:

  • Distracted driving, including motorists who are texting, talking on the phone, or using an in-dash infotainment system (among other distractions).
  • Speeding, which can lead to a crash because the driver does not have enough time to slow down to avoid a collision with a pedestrian.
  • Drunk driving, which severely impacts a motorist's ability to safely operate a motor vehicle.

Legal help is available for injured pedestrians in Connecticut

If you were badly injured or a loved one died after getting hit by a car, you can learn your legal rights and options by contacting an experienced personal injury attorney for a free consultation.

Without legal help, you may miss out on the compensation you need and deserve for your losses (e.g., medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, etc.). Insurance companies often will downplay the seriousness of injuries because they have a vested interest in paying you as little money as possible. As such, they will often purposefully delay, dispute, or deny claims to avoid paying a fair financial settlement.

You don’t need to go up against them alone. At the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli, we can put our knowledge, experience, and resources to work for you as we fight aggressively for the compensation you're entitled to.

Contact us today for a free consultation. There’s no obligation, and you don’t pay any legal fees unless we win your case.

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At the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone and Morelli, we build powerful cases for our clients and have a reputation for turning over every possible stone in order to win them. Serving Connecticut, our dedicated, determined personal injury lawyers mean business and opposing counsel knows it.

Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli