Collisions involving pedestrians in crosswalks Right of Way: Local Law No. 29 of 2014 added a new Section 19-190 to the Administrative Code, entitled “Right of way.” Subdivision (a) provides that if a motor vehicle driver fails to yield to a pedestrian or bicyclist who has the right of way, the driver shall be subject to a civil penalty of not more than $100, in addition to or as an alternative to the penalties that can be imposed for committing a traffic infraction as provided in the law. Subdivision (b) of Section 19-190 provides that if a driver violates subdivision (a) and the vehicle causes contact with the pedestrian or bicyclist, and thereby causes physical injury, the driver shall be subject to a civil penalty of not more than $250, in addition to or as an alternative to the penalties that can be imposed for committing a misdemeanor as provided in the law.
How does the Right of Way Law define right of way? The law requires drivers to exercise basic due care at all times to avoid failing to yield to a pedestrian or bicyclist with the right of way. That right of way typically exists in crosswalks where the pedestrian has the light, or when a bicyclist is riding in a road lane while passing an intersection, often on the right side of a motorist.
How does the NYPD determine if there has been a violation of the Right of Way Law?
If the NYPD finds, based on probable cause, that a driver has failed to yield to a pedestrian or bicyclist with the right of way and caused a physical injury or fatality, that driver may be charged and arrested.
Motorists should also be aware that the NYPD is issuing moving violations to drivers that make a turn while pedestrians are entering or are proceeding in a crosswalk.