Boise has had a large number of pedestrian accidents reported lately. Be careful out there. As a driver of a car or a pedestrian, refresh yourself on the rules of the road in Idaho. Generally speaking, Idaho first requires that drivers exercise due care to avoid colliding with a pedestrian:
… every driver of a vehicle shall exercise due care to avoid colliding with any pedestrian or any person propelling a human-powered vehicle and shall give an audible signal when necessary. Every driver shall exercise proper precaution upon observing any child or any obviously confused, incapacitated or intoxicated person.
(Idaho Code § 49-615). Of course, pedestrian have to exercise reason care, too, and they have to follow the traffic signals and markings to keep a driver from claiming that the pedestrian is at fault. Stay in a cross walk to have the right-of-way. (Idaho Code § 49-702). And, mind the pedestrian lights. Technically a pedestrian can only enter a crosswalk managed by a light when facing a “Flashing or Steady "Walk" (Idaho Code § 49-803(1)). A pedestrian is not supposed to enter a crosswalk when seeing a “Flashing or Steady ‘Don't Walk’ or ‘Wait.’" (Idaho Code § 49-803(2)).
The situation where a pedestrian misses the “walk” light but sees the flashing, but not solid, “Don’t Walk” light and enters the crosswalk is all too common. Pedestrians who do this do not have the right-of-way and, if hit by a car, can be found negligent.
Any pedestrian who is hit by a car should contact a lawyer immediately. Pedestrian-automobile accidents require a firm understanding of Idaho’s rules of the road. But, best approach for pedestrians is to follow the rules so they are sure to have the right-of-way. Having the right-of-way is the best defense to a driver trying to blame a pedestrian for the injuries the driver caused.