/ Pedestrian trying to cross the road

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doz 03 Oct 2019

Driving out of town, young woman waiting at zebra crossing.....you know those stripy things in the road with bright flashing lollipop lights....two cars in front of me and three on other side all go straight across. I stop my van and she sets off ....next car coming other way brakes at very last minute causing her to falter midway.

I'm sorry, but if you are that unaware of your surroundings/up yer own backside you should not be allowed anywhere near a steering wheel.

That's all.

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Dax H 03 Oct 2019
In reply to doz:

The rules of zebra crossings seem to have changed from stop if someone is waiting to only stop if they are actually on the crossing and ideally speed up a bit so that you are through before the person starts to move or is only 1 or 2 steps in to the road. 

I swear I would put traffic cameras on every crossing and cameras on every set of traffic lights too because they now seem to be the first 2 cars once they turn red are okay to carry on as normal. 

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Oceanrower 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Dax H:

> The rules of zebra crossings seem to have changed from stop if someone is waiting to only stop if they are actually on the crossing

Err, that IS the rule. You are legally only required to stop if they are actually ON  the crossing.

https://www.highwaycodeuk.co.uk/pedestrian-crossings.html

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climbingpixie 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Dax H:

> I swear I would put traffic cameras on every crossing and cameras on every set of traffic lights too

I totally agree. The amount of cars I see jumping red lights around Leeds and Bradford is staggering. There are certain junctions I'm super wary of turning right at now (especially when I'm on my bike) because it's endemic. A set of cameras at every traffic lights would improve safety considerably.

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tjdodd 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Oceanrower:

Interesting.  I have always assumed that if someone is waiting to cross you stop to let them cross but perhaps I am just nice.  My experience is that the majority of drivers now ignore zebra crossings and don't even slow down let alone stop when people are waiting.

So how zebra crossings are supposed to work in a safe way is beyond me?  If pedestrians actually followed the highway code and walked out in the expectation that drivers would stop then I think we would be seeing a lot of injuries/deaths.  Certainly as a pedestrian I expect cars to stop before I will even entertain stepping onto the road.  The reality though is that now I avoid zebra crossings as it is too dangerous to predict driver behaviour.  I prefer to cross on a normal bit of road but wait for no traffic.  Might take a little longer but I feel safer.

On another rant I have just moved and now have to drive to work through lots of differing speed limits (30, 40 and 50mph) with lots of speed cameras.  I am amazed at how many people overtake me when I am sticking to the limits (and that includes overtaking when going past speed cameras).

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mrphilipoldham 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Oceanrower:

Are you sure? 

Zebra crossings. As you approach a zebra crossing

  • look out for pedestrians waiting to cross and be ready to slow down or stop to let them cross

Edit - Ah, legally. Still, as part of the code you are meant to allow those waiting to cross.

Post edited at 08:32
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Oceanrower 03 Oct 2019
In reply to tjdodd:

Yep. I didn't say the rule made any sense. Just pointed out that that WAS the rule.

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Moley 03 Oct 2019
In reply to doz:

I was on a bus in Swansea yesterday and a young woman simply wandered across the road in front of the bus, with her head down looking at her mobile phone, never even noticed the bus drivers blast on his horn.

I fear a general lack of awareness all round, or maybe it is "up their own ar***"? 

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Lord_ash2000 03 Oct 2019
In reply to tjdodd:

If you're on a crossing you should expect cars to stop for you. However they don't have invisible force fields on them. If there is a car speeding down the road towards you don't just step out in front of it just because you're on a crossing. 

I would stand at the side and cross if cars are suitably far away or slow moving enough to easily be able to stop or cars approaching start to break to let you cross.

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felt 03 Oct 2019
felt 03 Oct 2019
galpinos 03 Oct 2019
In reply to climbingpixie:

> I totally agree. The amount of cars I see jumping red lights around Leeds and Bradford is staggering. There are certain junctions I'm super wary of turning right at now (especially when I'm on my bike) because it's endemic. A set of cameras at every traffic lights would improve safety considerably.

Red light jumping has joined speeding and using your mobile phone* as driving offences that seem to be accepted as ok.

*I know there is a lot of publicity about not using a phone when driving but I see it multiple times, every day.

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galpinos 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Lord_ash2000:

> If you're on a crossing you should expect cars to stop for you. However they don't have invisible force fields on them. If there is a car speeding down the road towards you don't just step out in front of it just because you're on a crossing. 

That's very sensible advice, but maybe the car shouldn't be "speeding down the road" in the first place? Zebra crossings are rarely placed on high speed roads (normally 20 or 30mph limit roads).

> I would stand at the side and cross if cars are suitably far away or slow moving enough to easily be able to stop or cars approaching start to break to let you cross.

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galpinos 03 Oct 2019
In reply to tjdodd:

> On another rant I have just moved and now have to drive to work through lots of differing speed limits (30, 40 and 50mph) with lots of speed cameras.  I am amazed at how many people overtake me when I am sticking to the limits (and that includes overtaking when going past speed cameras).

My residential street is 20mph, as are all the streets around us. Sticking to that results in waved fists, honked horns and overtaking.

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RX-78 03 Oct 2019
In reply to doz:

Interesting related article today in the guardian:

Collision course: pedestrian deaths are rising – and driverless cars aren’t likely to change that https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/oct/03/collision-course-pedestrian-deaths-rising-driverless-cars?CMP=Share_AndroidApp_Copy_to_clipboard

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Eric9Points 03 Oct 2019
In reply to tjdodd:

Sorry but I really don't understand your dilemma. If someone is on a crossing then vehicles and bikes have to stop. They don't have to stop if you're standing on the pavement.

The idea is that a pedestrian waits by the crossing until there is a suitable gap in the traffic such that they can Ste onto the crossing with vehicles far enough away that they can safely stop to let the pedestrian cross.

I think I first learned this in the Tufty Club when I was 6, then again when doing my cycling proficiency when I was 10 and saw the principle demonstrated in a Norman Wisdom film around the age of 11. I'd always assumed everyone understood that part of the highway code.

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TobyA 03 Oct 2019
In reply to galpinos:

> Red light jumping has joined speeding and using your mobile phone* as driving offences that seem to be accepted as ok.

Perhaps unsurprisingly I saw a car go straight through a pelican crossing on red with loads of school kids waiting to use it just an hour ago. I had just crossed it on my bike, it went orange as I was half across: coming the other way one car went on to the crossing once the light was already on orange (technically legal I suppose but unnecessary) then this guy behind him accelerated and shot across once it was clearly on red. It seemed bad enough for me to turn my head and watch thinking it might hit someone - fortunately he didn't. I sometimes worry I'm not a great driver, but I know I don't do stupid stuff like that.

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Max factor 03 Oct 2019
In reply to TobyA:

> Perhaps unsurprisingly I saw a car go straight through a pelican crossing on red with loads of school kids waiting to use it just an hour ago. 

Talking to our local lollypop lady this is sadly an everyday occurrence for her. I think she lives in fear of her life. The crossing is 50 yards out from a very congested roundabout, meaning cars speed away as soon they get free of the snarl up and heading straight for her. 

Then on other side of the dual carriageway, the queue of cars turning onto the roundabout frequently blocks the crossing, meaning weaving the kids through cars and lorries... it ain't fun.

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Blue Straggler 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Oceanrower:

> Err, that IS the rule. You are legally only required to stop if they are actually ON  the crossing.

Yes, and this seems to work well on continental/mainland Europe. It's taken me a while to get used to it and it can seem nerve-wracking when the traffic seems fast, but it works.

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Max factor 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Lord_ash2000:

> If you're on a crossing you should expect cars to stop for you. However they don't have invisible force fields on them. If there is a car speeding down the road towards you don't just step out in front of it just because you're on a crossing. 

This always irks me on the bike. Usually it's someone on their phone walking up the pavement who takes a sudden step onto the crossing before even making a cursory glance for traffic (they are listening out for an engine) and then expect you to defy the laws of physics and stop on a dime. 

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Bob Kemp 03 Oct 2019
In reply to felt:

That Guardian article was really interesting, particularly the way responsibility is commonly off-loaded onto the individual rather than looking at issues around road design. And also the point about the way SUVs are rather more likely to kill pedestrians because of their size and weight.

Post edited at 10:22
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stevieb 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Dax H:

I must be lucky. Near me the vast majority of drivers still stop for pedestrians stood at zebra crossings. There will still be some that don't, so you have to pay attention, but this isn't widespread at all.

Red lights though, I'm in complete agreement. There is a junction on my journey to work in Nottingham where I reckon they could make £1/2 million in the first week if they installed a red light camera. At rush hour, one or more cars tailing through on red is the norm.

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Eric9Points 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

> Sorry but I really don't understand your dilemma. If someone is on a crossing then vehicles and bikes have to stop. They don't have to stop if you're standing on the pavement.

> The idea is that a pedestrian waits by the crossing until there is a suitable gap in the traffic such that they can Ste onto the crossing with vehicles far enough away that they can safely stop to let the pedestrian cross.

> I think I first learned this in the Tufty Club when I was 6, then again when doing my cycling proficiency when I was 10 and saw the principle demonstrated in a Norman Wisdom film around the age of 11. I'd always assumed everyone understood that part of the highway code.


Why did I get dislikes for stating the rules of the road?

Do people think they're optional?

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SC 03 Oct 2019
In reply to doz:

I'm of the opinion that all traffic laws & possibly just all laws in general should be replaced with one law which simply says "Don't be a dick" Then everything is covered.

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fred99 03 Oct 2019
In reply to felt:

> Pedestrian deaths are going up and the experts don't know why.

Maybe they should be invited to walk to work and back, they'd soon get an inkling.

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Timmd 03 Oct 2019
In reply to tjdodd:

I occasionally do a 'half a step out' when waiting on zebra crossings to see if the drivers coming start to slow down.

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captain paranoia 03 Oct 2019
In reply to TobyA:

A couple of times I've stopped at zebra crossings on my bike, taking the lane, only to have some arse overtake me whilst people are crossing; once a mother with a pushchair.

Then again, the other day I watched in despair as people drove past a truck that was trying to 3-point reverse out of a 'satnav error' situation. As soon as the smallest gap appeared, they zoomed through, even with the truck still moving. Outside him, inside him, in front of him, behind him. Nuts.

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girlymonkey 03 Oct 2019
In reply to doz:

Near us there has been a new zebra crossing installed at the end of a shared use (bike and walking) path which many of the local primary kids use to get to school. This makes a lot of sense and cars are very pro-active about stopping for the crossing. However, I often come along this path and then join the road at that junction. Now, as cars see me approach, they stop and I don't feel I can just join the road! I have to wait back until there is a space and then join! Great problem to have, great that drivers are really respecting it, just doesn't quite suit my usage!

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DancingOnRock 03 Oct 2019
In reply to SC:

The problem is, everyone thinks the other person is the dick. 

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r0b 03 Oct 2019
In reply to stevieb:

> Red lights though, I'm in complete agreement. There is a junction on my journey to work in Nottingham where I reckon they could make £1/2 million in the first week if they installed a red light camera. At rush hour, one or more cars tailing through on red is the norm.

It seems that the old Green - go, Amber - stop unless unsafe to do so, Red - stop has changed to Green - go, Amber - go, Red - go for a few more seconds then stop reluctantly

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jelaby 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

The only "must" statement in the highway code (that is, the only law) is due vehicles:

"you MUST give way when a pedestrian has moved onto a crossing"

(Actually, for pedestrians there's also "You MUST NOT loiter on any type of crossing", but that's not really relevant)

The rest is "rules" and advice. 

The idea is that cars always stop (safely)f a pedestrian waiting at a zebra crossing not least because as soon as they take a step, they have right of way. The pedestrian isn't waiting for a large enough gap at all - the only reason not to just step into the zebra crossing is because, practically-speaking, cars might not stop and they'll squish you, or a car stopping suddenly night cause a crash.

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Stichtplate 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

> Why did I get dislikes for stating the rules of the road?

> Do people think they're optional?

I didn't hit the dislike, but in this case they are kinda optional. Most decent drivers will stop if they see someone waiting, even if they aren't on the actual crossing.

Not sure about the general bemoaning of a decline in driving standards on this thread though. Been off work this last month so have been walking the youngest into school every morning via a zebra crossing. 95% of drivers stop and of the 5% that don't see us in time, most will generally wave an apology. Saying that though, the thoughtless parking in the village centre has definitely got worse. Some Saturdays it's as though a dozen teenage Twoc'ers have decided to abandon their stolen motors en masse, with the explicit intent of causing maximum impediment to traffic and pedestrians alike. 

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Moley 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

> Why did I get dislikes for stating the rules of the road?

> Do people think they're optional?

They are probably young and thought the "Tufty Club" was something very non pc.

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Eric9Points 03 Oct 2019
In reply to jelaby:

> The idea is that cars always stop (safely)f a pedestrian waiting at a zebra crossing not least because as soon as they take a step, they have right of way. The pedestrian isn't waiting for a large enough gap at all - the only reason not to just step into the zebra crossing is because, practically-speaking, cars might not stop and they'll squish you, or a car stopping suddenly night cause a crash.

No, that's not what is said. There is no requirement for a car to stop if someone is standing on the pavement. I agree that people often do stop out if courtesy, I do it myself.

Yes, the pedestrian obviously has to wait until there is a big enough gap in the traffic such that they don't get hit and don't cause an accident.

If traffic is so dense that pedestrians are unduly delayed then the Zebra should be replaced by a Pelican.

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Timmd 03 Oct 2019
In reply to captain paranoia:

> Then again, the other day I watched in despair as people drove past a truck that was trying to 3-point reverse out of a 'satnav error' situation. As soon as the smallest gap appeared, they zoomed through, even with the truck still moving. Outside him, inside him, in front of him, behind him. Nuts.

It's like people can have tunnel vision which is only about keeping to making the progress they want to, people being unaware as well as selfish.

Post edited at 12:32
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fred99 03 Oct 2019
In reply to r0b:

> It seems that the old Green - go, Amber - stop unless unsafe to do so, Red - stop has changed to Green - go, Amber - go, Red - go for a few more seconds then stop reluctantly


I thought most car drivers believed that Red meant:- "2 or 3 more cars plus me".

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Ava Adore 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

I disliked "I'd always assumed...." which sounded patronising.

Ava

> Why did I get dislikes for stating the rules of the road?

> Do people think they're optional?

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antdav 03 Oct 2019

I have the opposite problem in my town, 5 zebra crossings in half a mile through the centre of town (only road crossing the town), lots of cars stopping for people who may cross the road when they are just walking down the pavement, then the drivers who wont move off until the crossers are safely off the zebra on the other side of the road.

There seems to be a lack of understanding of the rules which is causing traffic jams and danger to pedestrians and other road users.

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Eric9Points 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Ava Adore:

> I disliked "I'd always assumed...." which sounded patronising.

> Ava


!?

What was I supposed to say? It's an accurate reflection of what I thought as I'd understood the rules since about the age of six and assumed everyone else did.

Maybe we need to bring back those public information films.

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Max factor 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

> Maybe we need to bring back those public information films.

I remember "Don't be an Amber-Gambler"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H4TDEPP1R9Q

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john arran 03 Oct 2019
In reply to doz:

Why did the pedestrian cross the road?

Because the chicken was too scared.

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JoshOvki 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Stichtplate:

> I didn't hit the dislike, but in this case they are kinda optional. Most decent drivers will stop if they see someone waiting, even if they aren't on the actual crossing.

I see it as part of hazard awareness. Someone at a zebra crossing is likely to step into a road, so you slow down or stop to mitigate the situation.

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DubyaJamesDubya 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

> Sorry but I really don't understand your dilemma. If someone is on a crossing then vehicles and bikes have to stop. They don't have to stop if you're standing on the pavement.

> The idea is that a pedestrian waits by the crossing until there is a suitable gap in the traffic such that they can Ste onto the crossing with vehicles far enough away that they can safely stop to let the pedestrian cross.

> I think I first learned this in the Tufty Club when I was 6, then again when doing my cycling proficiency when I was 10 and saw the principle demonstrated in a Norman Wisdom film around the age of 11. I'd always assumed everyone understood that part of the highway code.

You seem to be rather casually ignoring the the line:

"look out for pedestrians waiting to cross and be ready to slow down or stop to let them cross"

Given that any pedestrian has absolute right of way on a crossing drivers have a duty to be ready to stop and expect to do so. Furthermore in the example given it was stated that the woman was waiting to cross  and that threat of actual injury was what  stopped her.

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Timmd 03 Oct 2019
In reply to DancingOnRock:

> The problem is, everyone thinks the other person is the dick. 

Yup, I once had a bloke driving down the bus lane during bus lane hours, and beep his horn because I was slowing him down while cycling along. I sometimes vaguely know I'm being a (little bit of a) dick if I'm a hurry, and resolve not to be again, without the rules it could be like traffic in India, the dick in all of us could surface. I'm learning to drive later this year, have been pondering how to not let the impatient side of my nature come out in my driving. It's occasionally scary cycling around people rushing to get home during rush hour.

Post edited at 16:52
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tlouth7 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

> Why did I get dislikes for stating the rules of the road?

Probably because what you described is definitely contrary to the consensus of how zebra crossings work, and possibly contrary to the highway code.

Pedestrians are not expected to wait for a gap, the first car that can stop safely once the pedestrian makes clear that they intend to cross* should do so.

*I realise that the mechanism of this interaction is not spelled out, and that according to the letter of the code the pedestrian should probably put a foot into the road to make their intention clear.

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PaulW 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

The law says that once a pedestrian steps onto the crossing they have right of way.

Legally that applies even if the driver is too close and travelling too fast to stop in time.

So the onus is on drivers to monitor the crossing and approaches. If there is a possibility that someone may want to cross the driver should adjust their speed so as to be able to stop if required.

I accept that in practice it is possible to get caught out by pedestrians acting in a random manner, such as doing a rapid u turn onto a crossing having walked past it but if the pedestrian is obviously approaching the crossing then it is prudent to stop because once they put a foot on the crossing you have to allow them precedence. 

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Dan Arkle 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

I disliked it because you don't actually understand the rules. 

They may have given you simple version as a six year old, but a car MUST stop if a pedestrian is on the crossing. And therefore must approach at a speed where they can easily stop if there is any possibility of a pedestrian stepping out. 

Its similar to a give way line. 

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Timmd 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

> Why did I get dislikes for stating the rules of the road?

> Do people think they're optional?

Perhaps the 'tone you wrote it in' in your head didn't come across to the people who disliked it?

People can be irrational too, either or both.

Post edited at 18:25
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jelaby 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

I think you have it entirely backwards.  Pedestrians have right of way on a crossing:

” Every pedestrian, if he is on the carriageway within the limits of a Zebra crossing, which is not for the time being controlled by a constable in uniform or traffic warden, before any part of a vehicle has entered those limits, shall have precedence within those limits over that vehicle and the driver of the vehicle shall accord such precedence to any such pedestrian."

The rules for cars are that they must be ready to stop if the pedestrian should start crossing, and the rules for pedestrians are pointing out the practicalities of preventing accidents.

When I learnt to drive, it was taught that you should always stop for pedestrians waiting at a zebra crossing, and I don't think it will have changed since.

In my experience, pelican or puffin crossings are put in when the problem is that pedestrians crossing at a zebra crossing are unduly delaying traffic (or when there is some systemic reason that makes a zebra crossing dangerous).

Post edited at 18:16
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Eric9Points 03 Oct 2019
In reply to jelaby:

"Rules for pedestrians (1 to 35)"

"Zebra crossings. 

Give traffic plenty of time to see you and to stop before you start to cross. Vehicles will need more time when the road is slippery. Wait until traffic has stopped from both directions or the road is clear before crossing. Remember that traffic does not have to stop until someone has moved onto the crossing. Keep looking both ways, and listening, in case a driver or rider has not seen you and attempts to overtake a vehicle that has stopped."

https://www.highwaycodeuk.co.uk/rules-for-pedestrians-crossings.html

https://www.askthe.police.uk/content/Q677.htm

https://www.gazettelive.co.uk/news/uk-world-news/you-know-how-use-zebra-14202288

Post edited at 18:54
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DancingOnRock 03 Oct 2019
In reply to jelaby:

I think you have to define what “within the limits of the zebra crossing” means. 

I assume it means that you can start to cross if there are no cars within the white zigzags. And once you start to cross the cars must stop. 

I’ll also make an assumption that the white zigzags are all a set length depending on stopping distances according to the speed limit for that road? 

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gethin_allen 03 Oct 2019
In reply to doz:

In Swansea cars don't stop for red lights so expecting them to stop for zebra crossings is a joke.

There's a large junction I pass every day and every day at least one, but normally two, cars squeeze through when I have a green light (ages after their light is red).

There's a camera (or a box at least) on that junction but it doesn't seem to do anything.

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lorentz 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Max factor:

> This always irks me on the bike. Usually it's someone on their phone walking up the pavement who takes a sudden step onto the crossing before even making a cursory glance for traffic (they are listening out for an engine) and then expect you to defy the laws of physics and stop on a dime. 

Same here. I had a jogger wearing headphones suddenly run out on a zebra crossing in front of my bike one evening. I had flashing lights and wearing high vis. He looked like he was going to run past the crossing and then changed his mind and decided to cross without so much as glancing  right. He took the time to swear at me. I was too busy swerving to avoid him  and simultaneously being surprised at his sense of entitlement to swear back at him. 

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Ceiriog Chris 03 Oct 2019
In reply to doz:

Which reminds me, I stopped yesterday and let a bloke cross theA483 /  A5 at one of the busy roundabouts  near Oswestry, he had a bike but was pushing it across the road, he shouted to me thanks as he had been waiting 20 minutes !   I haven't the patience he had and would have probably just walked out into the road after 2 minutes of being ignored by motorists

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jelaby 03 Oct 2019
In reply to DancingOnRock:

You assume wrong.

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/1997/2400/schedule/1/made

In the diagram, "the limits of the crossing" are the black and white stripes of the crossing. There is a "zebra controlled area" which is the but with zig zag lines, where you aren't allowed to "stop" (with its legal meaning, not colloquial one).

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jelaby 03 Oct 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

But there are no "must" or "must not" terms in there that indicate actual laws rather than just rules. The only law is the one in the "using the road" section found at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/the-highway-code/using-the-road-159-to-203 

Rule 195: "you MUST give way when a pedestrian has moved onto a crossing"

If you don't stop for a pedestrian waiting at a crossing, and they do step out in front of you, then it's you who are in the wrong. They might get killed, and you get done for causing death by dangerous driving, or whatever.

None of the things you've quoted indicate that pedestrians have to wait for a big enough gap in traffic that they can get onto the crossing and force the next car to stop.

What I was taught when I learned to drive, and what I do, and what the vast majority of drivers do, is stop if a pedestrian looks like they might cross at a zebra crossing.

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Dan Arkle 04 Oct 2019
In reply to lorentz: 

> Same here. I had a jogger wearing headphones suddenly run out on a zebra crossing in front of my bike one evening. I had flashing lights and wearing high vis. He looked like he was going to run past the crossing and then changed his mind and decided to cross without so much as... 

They are in the right legally, and you are in the wrong. 

Its his right of way, you should have slowed on seeing him. If you couldn't see him, you should have slowed just like as at a give way line. 

Of course I agree he contributed to the situation. However you have no legal or moral defense. 

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Ridge 04 Oct 2019
In reply to antdav:

> ....then the drivers who wont move off until the crossers are safely off the zebra on the other side of the road.

Rule 197

Pelican crossings which go straight across the road are one crossing, even when there is a central island. You MUST wait for pedestrians who are crossing from the other side of the island.

Slightly ambiguous as to what to do when they've crossed your lane and are crossing the other lane, but as it's legally one crossing if you move off you're driving across the zebra whilst a pedestrian is still on it.

I'm one of those annoying drivers who'll add 10 seconds to your wait, on the assumption that the driver coming the other way is texting his mates, and if he sees traffic moving across the zebra when he makes his cursory glance upwards he'll carry straight on. Standing traffic in the other lane might just make him look for the pedestrian in the middle of the crossing on his side.

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john arran 04 Oct 2019
In reply to doz:

When I was young, in the 70s, people would stop for pedestrians on zebra crossings. When going to France we were amazed at how some cars would continue as though the crossing wasn't even there.

Nowadays I perceive quite the opposite, with most zebra crossings in Ariège being  well observed and drivers typically courteous to pedestrians crossing or waiting to cross.

I'm left wondering whether the reversal is explained mostly be law, by enforcement or by social attitudes within society.

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Philip 04 Oct 2019
In reply to doz:

Worse than zebra crossings, drivers who enter a roundabout when their exit is blocked. Blocking up the roundabout for everyone else.

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DubyaJamesDubya 04 Oct 2019
In reply to jelaby:

> But there are no "must" or "must not" terms in there that indicate actual laws rather than just rules. The only law is the one in the "using the road" section found at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/the-highway-code/using-the-road-159-to-203 

> Rule 195: "you MUST give way when a pedestrian has moved onto a crossing"

> If you don't stop for a pedestrian waiting at a crossing, and they do step out in front of you, then it's you who are in the wrong. They might get killed, and you get done for causing death by dangerous driving, or whatever.

> None of the things you've quoted indicate that pedestrians have to wait for a big enough gap in traffic that they can get onto the crossing and force the next car to stop.

> What I was taught when I learned to drive, and what I do, and what the vast majority of drivers do, is stop if a pedestrian looks like they might cross at a zebra crossing.

Totally agree. When I was learning to drive my instructor would say that I should always me very careful, and slow down, if I saw a pedestrian anywhere near a crossing because they might step onto it and I would need to stop.

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DubyaJamesDubya 04 Oct 2019
In reply to antdav:

> I have the opposite problem in my town, 5 zebra crossings in half a mile through the centre of town (only road crossing the town), lots of cars stopping for people who may cross the road when they are just walking down the pavement, then the drivers who wont move off until the crossers are safely off the zebra on the other side of the road.

> There seems to be a lack of understanding of the rules which is causing traffic jams and danger to pedestrians and other road users.

Yup that would appear to be you that you are talking about.

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lorentz 04 Oct 2019
In reply to Dan Arkle:

> They are in the right legally, and you are in the wrong. 

> Its his right of way, you should have slowed on seeing him. If you couldn't see him, you should have slowed just like as at a give way line. 

> Of course I agree he contributed to the situation. However you have no legal or moral defense. 

Aye. Agree with you and I always do stop whether I'm in car or on bike.... except that in this case I was already on the crossing doing about 16mph when he more or less stepped out in front of me front wheel. Like I say. Pure reflex to miss him. He made no indication that he was gong to cross as he was running past the crossing with headphones on. Then he didn't even glance up and just stepped out at me. The laws the law, but common sense dictates you look first.

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Hugo First 04 Oct 2019
In reply to antdav:

I don’t think it’s the rules - lack of understanding or not - that’s causing the traffic jams. That’ll be you, and all the other motor vehicles driving through the centre of town....

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Hyphin 05 Oct 2019
In reply to Oceanrower:

Bit selective there, 

look out for pedestrians waiting to cross and be ready to slow down or stop to let them cross

Post edited at 23:31
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AndyC 06 Oct 2019
In reply to doz:

I like threads like this because they highlight the difference between the 'rules' and reality, and the discrepancy between the 'rules' and how people remember and/or interpret them. Luckily, common sense prevails in most cases to prevent carnage. 

In Norway, roundabouts are always entertaining - the Norwegian version of the highway code states the requirement is to give way only to traffic already on the roundabout, otherwise it's first come, first served. The vast majority of drivers interpret this, in reality, to mean giving way to traffic approaching from the left, regardless of whether it's on the roundabout or not. This is sensible, since most roundabouts are small and you have to be pretty brave or stupid to pull out in front of car approaching the roundabout at speed from your left. But the occasional person who interprets the code literally tends to throw a large spanner in the works.

Norwegian drivers will stop at pedestrian crossings if there is the remotest chance that someone might be contemplating crossing, even if they are meters away. This is understandable since many pedestrians just walk out without looking. But it doesn't help the traffic flow much and is almost embarrassing if you happen to just be walking along the pavement past the crossing. (A new set of 'rules' will be needed soon for people wearing headphones and using mobile phones - I don't know how they can feel safe when they are so disconnected from the world around them).

Cycling on pavements is allowed here, but you have no right of way if you cycle straight out over a pedestrian crossing - you have to at least stop and put a foot on the ground first. A lot of cyclists ignore this, it's amazing there aren't more accidents. A new problem now - electric scooters have really taken off over here too, an idiot on a scooter can approach a pedestrian crossing at 25 kph; drivers have no chance to stop.

It's a mad world!

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felt 06 Oct 2019
In reply to AndyC:

> It's a mad world!

Hitchhiking in Norway years ago reminded me of Waiting for Godot.

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Deleted bagger 06 Oct 2019
In reply to doz:

I attended a pedestrian with a serious head injury recently. Blood everywhere and a hell of a dint in the windscreen they'd connected with. Classic head injury scenario. Conscious but confused, followed by slightly aggressive and then went off big style. Thought they where going to dye in my arms. Fortunately it was near a city centre. Within a few minutes five police cars where there and a paramedic team. They where hugely supportive of me and the distraught driver who'd been driving.

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Timmd 06 Oct 2019
In reply to Deleted bagger: I once cycled past a dead cyclist who had smashed the windscreen with his head, I'm presuming. He was lying by the road side with blood down the side of his head, and his mates were sitting in a line by the road side looking shocked (I later looked up the outcome of the accident), the driver looked really wobbly on his feet while being led to a police car. It was quite a reminder of the forces involved and human mortality.

Post edited at 19:58
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wercat 07 Oct 2019
In reply to DubyaJamesDubya:

My father failed his driving test in the 1960s driving up into the centre of Durham (Market Day) via the narrow Saddler Street.  "Do you consider that 5 miles per hour is a safe speed with so many pedestrians about???????" was how he told the examiner's reason.

imho people should approach any crossing as a hazard if there is anyone who could conceivably reach it in the same time frame.  And to avoid trouble it pays to treat them always with respect out of habit.

I always think it's a good idea to slow down approaching people walking on the road without a footpath as it is not only safer but but also lets them know you have seen and have reacted

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