Every day, millions of pedestrians walk the sidewalks and streets of New York City. In a city of this size, with this many people, it’s important to be reminded occasionally of basic traffic laws and safety precautions for pedestrians.

For example:

  • If possible, cross streets only at marked crosswalks or intersections.
  • Never begin crossing a street in front of a parked vehicle. Why? It’s difficult, if not impossible, to see approaching vehicles, and drivers likely can’t see you as you try to cross.
  • At night, cross the street only in well-lit areas. Again, it’s a visibility issue. Many serious pedestrian accidents happen where streets are poorly lit.
  • Try to make eye contact with drivers so you know they see you. This is a way you can communicate your intention to cross, as well as make your presence known.
  • Don’t assume a vehicle will stop for you.
  • At night, wear clothing with retro-reflective materials to make you more visible to drivers. Reflective clothing is also a good idea in foggy and rainy weather.
  • Be sure to look across ALL lanes of traffic. Just because one car stopped for you doesn’t mean that all of them will.
  • Obey pedestrian signals: WALK / DON’T WALK signs.
  • Always scan for approaching vehicles before crossing, even if you have a WALK signal.

If you have suffer injuries in a pedestrian accident, it’s important to know your options for getting all the medical care and financial compensation you need and deserve. For more on that, please see our overview of New York pedestrian accidents.