Pedestrian Rights in Florida

Did you know that in Florida vehicles must yield or stop for individuals legally crossing the street at an intersection?

This also applies to bicyclists and motor vehicle drivers. Failing to yield could result in a citation and/or three points on your driver’s license. Not to mention, you could severely injury someone. As a pedestrian it’s important to know some of the basic laws surrounding roadway crossings. According to Florida law, no pedestrian should suddenly cross the street making it impossible for a driver to yield. In addition, it is illegal to cross an intersection diagonally without official traffic control devices.


Myth or fact?

Do pedestrians always have the right of way?

Florida Statutes only define who is required to yield the right-of-way. However, all sides of the intersection are technically crosswalks – marked or not. The only exception is where official signage has explicitly closed a particular crosswalk. Remember that as a driver, it is your responsibly to yield to any pedestrian in an unmarked crosswalk at that intersection of a cross-street. If you are a pedestrian at a crosswalk, you must yield if faced with a red traffic signal or steady DON’T WALK signal.


Is jaywalking illegal?

It’s a very well-known rule not to jaywalk, but where did this rule come from? Jaywalking is not actually a legal term. While some ways of crossing are in fact illegal, crossing mid-block is not one of them in Florida.

Whether you are a pedestrian or a diver, it’s important to keep these laws in mind. Avoid accidents or loss of life by paying attention to your surroundings no matter where you are crossing or driving. And remember, defensive driving is always the safest kind of driving.