Attorney at Graves McLain Injury Lawyers

Practice Areas: Wrongful Death, Medical Malpractice, Bad Faith Insurance, Car Accidents, T-Bone Tractor-Trailer Accidents, Dangerous Drugs

In 2020 alone, over 7,000 pedestrians were killed in road accidents involving motorists. These numbers have increased over time and vary across each state. 

In Tulsa, Oklahoma, all road users have a duty to respect traffic laws. Given how vulnerable pedestrians can be, motorists must be aware of their surroundings to avoid pedestrian accidents. 

Responsibilities of Pedestrians and Motorists in Tulsa, Oklahoma

Everyone is a pedestrian at some point during the day. All road users–pedestrians and motorists–must adhere to local traffic ordinances. 

Pedestrian Responsibilities

Some of the common pedestrian responsibilities to ensure road safety include:

  • Always be aware of their surroundings
  • Assume that drivers may not be paying attention to the road
  • Know where they can safely walk on the road
  • Be extra vigilant if they are seniors, children, have a disability, or are under the influence of alcohol, street drugs, or medication
  • When walking in parking lots and sidewalks:
  • Stay alert to engine noises or backup lights on cars when near on-street parking spaces and parking lots
  • Be aware that drivers may park in a way that blocks sidewalks and driveways, forcing pedestrians to walk into the street
  • Be aware that drivers may drive and park on sidewalks
  • Find a sidewalk or crossing if their only option is to walk in the street or face traffic

When crossing a street:

  • Ensure that traffic has stopped in each lane when crossing multiple lanes
  • Assume that drivers turning right on red or left may not slow down
  • Avoid distractions like wearing headphones, texting, talking on the phone, etc. when crossing streets
  • Listen and look left, right, and left again before crossing the street
  • Stand clear of buses, parked cars, hedges, or any other obstacles before crossing
  • Cross only at intersections and only if they have a signal

When walking at night:

  • Cross streets in well-lit areas
  • Wear light-colored or reflective clothing to be visible
  • Carry a flashlight, but avoid shining it into a driver’s eyes or line of sight

We cover some responsibilities essential for pedestrian safety below.  By following these guidelines, pedestrians can reduce their risk of being involved in a pedestrian accident.

Motorists’ Responsibilities

When driving, motorists have responsibilities to:

  • Respect pedestrians’ right of way over turning vehicles
  • Watch out for pedestrians using the crosswalk
  • Slow down in pedestrian-filled areas
  • Be alert on the road (Avoid distractions like texting, talking on the phone, using headphones, eating while driving, etc.).
  • Call 911 in case a pedestrian or passenger is hurt
  • Stay on the scene of an accident until it has been processed. 

Common Questions about Pedestrian Rights

Below are commonly asked questions concerning pedestrian rights and safety.

  • Do pedestrians always have the right of way?

No, pedestrians don’t have the right of way on streets unless they are on crosswalks and intersections. They must also obey any road signals and signs at intersections. Additionally, pedestrians can only walk on roadways if it’s safe and must walk facing traffic.

  • Where do pedestrians have a right to cross?

According to Section 1102 of the Tulsa Traffic Code (Title 37), pedestrians must cross the street within a crosswalk or at an intersection, unless they are in a residential neighborhood without traffic control devices.

  • Who is at a higher risk of pedestrian accidents?

Seniors, children, and people with disabilities are at a higher risk of pedestrian accidents due to their vulnerability and limited mobility. Additionally, pedestrians who are under the influence of alcohol, street drugs, or medication are also at a higher risk of being involved in an accident.

What should pedestrians do if they are involved in a pedestrian accident?

If a pedestrian is involved in a pedestrian accident, they should seek medical attention as soon as possible. They should also contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss their legal options and seek compensation for their losses. It is important to remain at the scene of the accident until it has been processed by the authorities.

Legal Consequences of Violating Laws

Motorists can face legal consequences for violating traffic laws. These include:

Criminal penalties.

Most car accidents don’t always result in criminal charges. However, motorists acting recklessly and disregarding other road users’ safety can be charged with a crime. Potential charges that may arise include:

  • Fines
  • Jail time.

Civil liability.

In some cases, parties prefer to handle a dispute without involving the state. An injured party can still sue the negligent party in a civil court, whether there is a criminal prosecution. The legal consequences arising from a civil case are monetary damages or some form of relief. 

Liable motorists can also have their licenses revoked. 

Steps to Take if Injured as A Pedestrian Due to Negligence

Pedestrian Law

Here is what to do if injured as a pedestrian due to a motorist’s negligence:

  • Contact emergency responders immediately to get quick medical assistance
  • Call the police to report the incident as soon as possible. They will file an official police report supporting the injured party’s claim.
  • Gather evidence. The injured party should try as much as possible to collect video or photo evidence to support their claim. 
  • Contact the insurance company. The injured pedestrian should contact the insurance company to kick-start the claim process. If contacted by the negligent party’s insurance provider, the victim must avoid providing any information or accepting a quick settlement. 
  • Contact a personal injury lawyer. A personal injury lawyer should be experienced in dealing with such matters. The attorney can help in the litigation and insurance claim processes. 


Pedestrians have the right to use the road in many cases, but they are often expected to use designated paths such as sidewalks or crosswalks when they need to cross a road. This is because roads are primarily designed for the use of motor vehicles, and pedestrians are often at high risk when they are sharing the road with cars, trucks, and other vehicles.

Motorists are also required to respect the right of way of pedestrians, especially when they are on sidewalks or in crosswalks. If a motorist fails to do this and causes an accident that results in injuries to a pedestrian, the pedestrian may be entitled to compensation for their losses.

If you have been injured in a car accident, our expert team can help you get the compensation you deserve. Contact us or call us at 918-359-6600 today for a free consultation. 

When injury victims need a law firm with a reputation for excellence, turn to Graves McLain Injury Lawyers. We are a top-rated personal injury firm determined to be the best. With decades of award-winning representation, our clients recover the compensation they need to put their lives back together.

  • I knew my auto accident wouldn’t be worth much and they knew it too but worked as if it was a million dollar case and kept me informed hope I never need an attorney again but if I do it’ll be graves mcclain I brag on them to everyone

    Margie C

  • The staff is great and super friendly. They helped me get the money I deserved. I would definitely recommend them to everyone!

    CiCi H

  • My orthopedic doctor recommended Graves McLain Injury Lawyers, PLLC, to me following the need for revision hip surgery due to a hip from Stryker that was putting poison into my system. The doctor took care of the hip, and Graves McLain Injury Lawyers, PLLC, took care of the legal case. They were very thorough, professional, courteous, and always ready to answer the questions I had throughout the length of the case. In a word, the entire office is fantastic. I’m sure they were tired of my inquiries on the case’s progress, but they did not show it. They were always willing to respond and were very positive. If I ever have a claim in the future, they will be the first group to whom I reach out.

    Robert S.

Contact Our Firm &
Request a Free Case Review