Law enforcement is a key component of efforts to ensure safe and secure travel options. Law enforcement agencies have a role to play in raising awareness about safety issues, influencing behaviors and social norms, setting policies, and reinforcing and supporting educational and engineering programs and strategies. One of the ways that enforcement can advance safety for pedestrians and bicyclists is by enforcing yielding laws. Although laws vary by state, most states require motorists to yield to or stop for pedestrians crossing the street in a crosswalk, even if the pedestrian is in an unmarked crosswalk. However, these laws are not emphasized in driver education and training and often are not enforced adequately. This problem is more pronounced on streets with higher speed limits where it is more difficult to get motorists to slow or yield to pedestrians. Targeted enforcement operations have been shown to significantly increase motorist yielding while also improving pedestrian behavior. A high-visibility enforcement program can also lead to a sustained increase in motorist yielding over time. In addition to safety benefits, these operations tend to generate positive feedback from the community and may reveal related safety issues.


State Laws on Yielding/Stopping for Pedestrians summarizes legislation across states on pedestrian crossing and yielding laws.

Pedestrian Safety Enforcement Operations: A How-To Guide offers information to conduct enforcement operations and highlights successful programs from across the country.

A Primer for Highway Safety Professionals summarizes infrastructure treatments and behavioral programs to address specific safety. problems, including poor yielding behaviors.

The Effect of High-Visibility Enforcement on Driver Compliance with Pedestrian Right-of-Way Laws: 4-Year Follow-Up determines the extent of observed increases in motorist yielding nearly 4 years after the implementation of a high-visibility enforcement intervention program.

High-Visibility Enforcement on Driver Compliance With Pedestrian Right-of-Way Laws offers strategies to increase motorist yielding to pedestrians on a citywide basis using high-visibility pedestrian right-of-way enforcement in Gainesville, Florida.

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Effect of a Community-Based Pedestrian Injury Prevention Program on Driver Yielding Behavior at Marked Crosswalks summarizes key behavioral outcomes related to the Watch for Me NC safety program.

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