What do I need to know about Ontario’s new pedestrian crossover rules?
Earlier this year, the province introduced pedestrian crossovers under the Highway Traffic Act. They have specific signs and pavement markings. Some crossovers in higher traffic areas may have overhead lights, flashing beacons and push buttons.
The first Hamilton pedestrian crossover was constructed and unveiled this past September on Limeridge Road East at the rail trail crossing. Hamilton is anticipating many more to be constructed in the months ahead. The law requires that drivers and cyclists must now stop and yield to pedestrians intending to cross the road. A driver must wait until the pedestrian steps completely off the road before proceeding.
The rule doesn’t apply to crosswalks at intersections with stop signs or traffic signals unless a school crossing guard is present. So, be aware of the difference which might be obvious by the bright yellow “NEW” sign which is usually placed over newly constructed road markings. If you don’t see any traffic signals, pedestrian signals or stop signs, you might be approaching a pedestrian crossover. If in doubt, just stop and wait for the pedestrian to clear the entire roadway prior to proceeding. Hitting the gas a little too soon could result in fines between $150 to $300 and 3 demerit points.