Code of the District of Columbia

§ 50–2201.28. Right-of-way at crosswalks.

(a) The driver of a vehicle shall stop and remain stopped to allow a pedestrian to cross the roadway within any marked crosswalk, or unmarked crosswalk at an intersection, when the pedestrian is upon the lane, or within one lane approaching the lane, on which the vehicle is traveling or onto which it is turning.

(a-1) Whenever a vehicle is stopped at a marked crosswalk at an unsignalized intersection, a vehicle approaching the crosswalk in an adjacent lane or from behind the stopped vehicle shall stop and give the right-of-way to ensure the safety of pedestrians and bicyclists before passing the stopped vehicle.

(b) A pedestrian who has begun crossing on the “WALK” signal shall be given the right-of-way by the driver of any vehicle to continue to the opposite sidewalk or safety island, whichever is nearest.

(b-1) A person on a bicycle or operating a personal mobility device upon or along a sidewalk or while crossing a roadway in a crosswalk shall have the rights and duties applicable to a pedestrian under the same circumstances; provided, that:

(1) The bicyclist or personal mobility device operator yields to pedestrians on the sidewalk or crosswalk; and

(2) Riding a bicycle on the sidewalk is permitted.

(c) Any person convicted of failure to stop and give the right-of-way to a pedestrian or of colliding with a pedestrian shall be subject to a fine of not more than the amount set forth in § 22-3571.01, or imprisonment for not more than 30 days, or both. Any person convicted of a violation of this section may be sentenced to perform community service as an alternative to, but not in addition to, any term of imprisonment authorized by this section.

(c-1) Civil fines, penalties, and fees may be imposed by the Department of Motor Vehicles as alternative sanctions for any infraction of the provisions of this section, or rules or regulations issued under the authority of this section, pursuant to Chapter 23 of this title [§ 50-2301.01 et seq.]. Adjudication of any infraction shall be pursuant to Chapter 23 of this title [§ 50-2301.01 et seq.].

(d) The Mayor of the District of Columbia (“Mayor”) shall submit to the Council of the District of Columbia (“Council”) a proposed plan for an extensive public information program on the rights and responsibilities of pedestrians and drivers. This proposed plan shall include proposals for increasing police enforcement of pedestrian right-of-way laws. The proposed plan shall be submitted to the Council within 90 days of October 9, 1987, for a 45-day period of review, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, legal holidays, and days of Council recess. If the Council does not approve or disapprove the proposed plan, in whole or in part, by resolution within this 45-day review period, the proposed plan shall be deemed approved.

(e) Prosecution for violations under this section shall be conducted in the name of the District of Columbia by the Attorney General for the District of Columbia, or his or her assistants, in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.


(Oct. 9, 1987, D.C. Law 7-34, § 2, 34 DCR 5316; Mar. 16, 2005, D.C. Law 15-224, § 2, 51 DCR 10533; Mar. 2, 2007, D.C. Law 16-191, § 114, 53 DCR 6794; Nov. 25, 2008, D.C. Law 17-269, § 2, 55 DCR 11015; Dec. 2, 2011, D.C. Law 19-49, § 2, 58 DCR 8945; Mar. 5, 2013, D.C. Law 19-206, § 2, 59 DCR 12505; May 1, 2013, D.C. Law 19-307, § 201, 60 DCR 2753; June 11, 2013, D.C. Law 19-317, § 273, 60 DCR 2064.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 40-726.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 15-224 rewrote subsec. (a) and, in subsec. (c), substituted “stop and give” for “yield”.

D.C. Law 16-191 added subsec. (e).

D.C. Law 17-269 added subsec. (c-1).

D.C. Law 19-49 rewrote subsec. (c-1).

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-206 added (a-1) and (b-1).

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-307 rewrote (a), which read: “When official traffic-control signals are not in place or not in operation, the driver of a vehicle shall stop and give the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within any marked crosswalk or unmarked crosswalk at an intersection.”

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-317 substituted “of not more than the amount set forth in § 22-3571.01” for “of not more than $500” in (c).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 2 of Pedestrian Safety Reinforcement Emergency Amendment Act of 2011 (D.C. Act 19-135, August 9, 2011, 58 DCR 6798).

For temporary amendment of (a), see § 201 of the Safety-Based Traffic Enforcement Emergency Amendment Act of 2012 (D.C. Act 19-635, January 19, 2013, 60 DCR 1731).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 273 of the Criminal Fine Proportionality Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-45, April 1, 2013, 60 DCR 5400, 20 DCSTAT 1300).

For temporary (90 days) safety-based traffic enforcement, see § 201 of the Safety-Based Traffic Enforcement Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-50, April 22, 2013, 60 DCR 6339, 20 DCSTAT 1356).

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 19-307: Section 401(a) of D.C. Law 19-307 provided that the 2013 amendment to this section shall apply as of May 1, 2013.

Applicability of D.C. Law 19-317: Section 401 of D.C. Law 19-317 provided that the act shall apply only to offenses committed on or after June 11, 2013.

For requirement of the submission of a report and recommendations as to whether the DC Circulator buses and District-owned, heavy-duty vehicles should be equipped with pedestrian-alert technologies, see § 606 of D.C. Law 21-155.