Indiana Pedestrian Laws

Indiana Pedestrian Laws

What Are Indiana’s Laws Regarding Pedestrians?

Navigating the bustling streets and serene pathways of Indiana requires a clear understanding of the state’s pedestrian laws. These laws are designed to ensure the safety and harmony of all road users—pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists alike. With the rise in pedestrian traffic, especially in urban and suburban areas, being informed about these regulations is crucial. Our legal team at Doehrman Buba Ring aims to shed light on Indiana’s pedestrian laws, highlighting the responsibilities and rights of pedestrians, as well as the obligations of motorists towards those on foot. In doing so, we hope to promote a safer, more informed pedestrian environment across the Hoosier State.

If you are a pedestrian who has been injured in a traffic accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Contact our skilled pedestrian accident attorneys today for a free consultation.

Do Pedestrians Have the Right-of-Way in Indiana?

Pedestrians should allow oncoming traffic to pass before crossing, except when at a marked crosswalk where they have the right to cross.

In Indiana, pedestrians are given the right-of-way only when they are already present on the street. However, it’s crucial not to enter the street if a vehicle is approaching too closely to stop safely. Pedestrians must yield to vehicles when crossing outside of designated crosswalks or intersections. Furthermore, you should only cross when all traffic lanes are clear enough to provide ample time for you to safely reach the other side.

If you are crossing in a marked crosswalk or at an intersection, you, as the pedestrian, have the right-of-way, and vehicles must yield to you.

What If Vehicles Are Stopped?

Even if a vehicle is stopped, it doesn’t automatically grant you the right-of-way. Ensure you have the correct signal before proceeding to cross safely.

Traffic Control Signals

When it comes to traffic lights and signals, everyone—whether you’re walking on foot, pedaling a bike, or driving a car—needs to follow the rules. This includes those pedestrian crosswalk signals. If it says “Walk,” go ahead. But if it’s flashing “Don’t Walk” or is solid, you have to wait it out unless a police officer or another law enforcement officer tells you differently. Being aware of these signals helps keep everyone safe and keeps traffic flowing smoothly.

Jaywalking Regulations

In Indiana, it is unlawful to cross the street outside of marked crosswalks or intersections. Motorists are not obligated to yield to pedestrians crossing in these undesignated areas.

Sidewalk Usage Requirements

Pedestrians are required to use sidewalks when they are available. This ensures that foot traffic is kept separate from vehicular traffic, enhancing safety for all. In situations where sidewalks are not present, pedestrians should use the shoulder of the road or bike lanes when applicable.

Walking While Intoxicated (WUI)

It’s important for pedestrians to understand that Indiana laws prohibit walking while under the influence of alcohol. Just as drivers must adhere to the legal blood alcohol content (BAC) limit of 0.08%, this restriction equally applies to pedestrians. Ensuring that you are not intoxicated while walking helps maintain safety for yourself and others on the road.


At intersections where traffic lights are present, pedestrians are required to cross the street only at marked crosswalks. This rule is in place to ensure that crossing is done safely and at designated points, reducing the risk of accidents.

Additionally, crossing diagonally at an intersection is generally not allowed. This means that pedestrians should not cut across the intersection in a straight line from one corner to another. However, there are exceptions to this rule. In some locations, diagonal crossing might be permitted if clearly indicated by official traffic control devices, such as signs or signals. When diagonal crossing is allowed, pedestrians must closely follow the directions given by these traffic control devices.

The Responsibility of Drivers

Ensuring the safety of pedestrians is a shared responsibility, as critical for drivers as it is for walkers. Drivers in Indiana are expected to adhere to specific laws to minimize risks and prevent accidents involving pedestrians. Following these guidelines is essential for creating a safe environment for everyone on the road.

  • Stop Completely: Drivers must come to a full stop at all stop signs and red lights, not merely slowing down.
  • Yield at Crosswalks: When approaching a crosswalk, yield to pedestrians. This is crucial for their safety and is legally required.
  • Do Not Block Crosswalks: Ensure that your vehicle does not stop within a crosswalk. This can force pedestrians to detour around your vehicle, putting them in danger.
  • Avoid Impaired Driving: Never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Impaired driving significantly reduces reaction times and impairs judgment.
  • Obey Speed Limits: Speeding increases the risk and severity of accidents. Always drive within the speed limit.
  • Passing Regulations: Do not pass or overtake another vehicle that is stopped for a pedestrian. This is a critical rule to follow, as pedestrians might be crossing, and you cannot see from behind the stopped vehicle.

By following these rules, drivers play a pivotal role in maintaining safety and preventing accidents on Indiana’s roads.

How Do Most Pedestrian Accidents Happen? 

Most pedestrian accidents occur due to a combination of driver negligence and hazardous road conditions. Drivers distracted by their phones, failing to yield at crosswalks, or speeding in residential areas significantly contribute to these accidents. Poorly lit streets, lack of sidewalks, and intersections without proper signage further exacerbate the risks for pedestrians. Additionally, accidents are more frequent during evening hours when visibility is low. Understanding these common causes is the first step towards advocating for safer roads and more mindful driving behaviors.

What To Do After a Pedestrian Accident?

If you find yourself involved in a pedestrian accident, it is critical to take immediate and appropriate steps to ensure your safety and protect your rights. The moments following an accident can be overwhelming, but knowing what to do can significantly impact the outcome of any claims or legal actions that may follow.

  • Call 911: Report the accident and request medical assistance.
  • Seek Medical Attention: Even if injuries seem minor, a thorough check is vital.
  • Document the Scene: Take photos and gather contact information from witnesses.
  • Report to Law Enforcement: Ensure an official report is filed.
  • Contact an Indiana Pedestrian Accident Attorney: Consider consulting with a legal professional for guidance.
  • Notify Your Insurance: Inform your insurance company about the accident.

Taking these steps can help safeguard your health and legal interests, laying a foundation for dealing with the aftermath of the accident in a comprehensive and informed manner.

What Are Common Pedestrian Accident Injuries?

Many pedestrian accidents accidents often result in injuries that can range from minor to life-threatening. The nature of these injuries largely depends on factors such as the speed at which the vehicle was moving and the point of impact. Understanding the common types of injuries can raise awareness and encourage preventative measures. Below is a list of the most frequently reported injuries following pedestrian accidents:

  • Head injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Broken bones
  • Lacerations and bruises
  • Internal injuries
  • Psychological trauma
  • Limb loss or amputations

Get the Help of an Expert Indiana Personal Injury Attorney

In the aftermath of a pedestrian accident, facing the legal and recovery process can be daunting. The complexities of insurance claims, medical bills, and potential legal battles require knowledgeable guidance to ensure you receive the care and compensation you deserve. At Doehrman Buba Ring, our team of expert Indiana personal injury attorneys is dedicated to providing comprehensive support to victims of pedestrian accidents. With years of experience and a commitment to justice, we are here to help you through every step of this challenging time. If you or a loved one has been involved in a pedestrian accident, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Your recovery and rights are our top priority. Contact us today for a consultation and take the first step towards securing your future.

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