Sign of the Week is a weekly feature here on the SenSen Driving School blog that demystifies some common head-scratching signs you’ll see as a driver.
Pedestrian crosswalk ahead is a great sign to note for all drivers. As the name suggests, this sign warns you that a pedestrian crosswalk is coming up soon.
Oftentimes I find that student drivers miss this sign as we drive by, so they don’t slow down early enough and end up not having enough time to stop for a pedestrian about to cross or waiting at the corner for us to stop.
By law, drivers need to stop for pedestrians crossing the street at a crosswalk. At SenSen Driving School, one of the things we always coach our students on is to look further ahead to avoid any surprises.
Preparing to stop for pedestrians
As you approach a crosswalk, about a quarter of a block away, start to hover your foot over the brake pedal for about 2 seconds. There’s no need to apply pressure to the brake pedal if there are no pedestrians around. If there’s no need to stop, then put your foot back onto the gas pedal.
Hovering your foot on the brake pedal gives you ample time to stop for any pedestrians or cyclists who use the crosswalk.
Sometimes the crosswalks have lights that pedestrians can control. These lights alert drivers and other road users to be aware that someone is crossing—a great safety precaution especially at night time.
Again, stay sharp, stay alert and be safe!