Q&A - Failing to Stop for Pedestrians Ticket

Q&A ImageI was given a ticket for not stopping for pedestrians at a crosswalk. It was a red light in front of me, with cars lined up behind a crosswalk about 10meters from the light on the right lane. I was on the left lane, slowing down before the red with only one car in front of me stopped at the light.

As I was passing the crosswalk, I slowed to make sure there were no pedestrians, and decided to pass.

Undercover police car was stopped behind the crosswalk, as there were cars in front of him stopped at the red light.

Pedestrians emerged from a pathway partially hidden by bushes and the cop car on the right hand side and pressed the crossing light. By that time I was already over top the crosswalk and decided to go.

The moment I passed I started accelerating because the light turned green but then the undercover officer pulled me over immediately and I was told I was going too fast and so, did not stop for the pedestrians.

I am a new driver (with two months left until my class 5 road test) with my family in the car at the time, slowing down for a red and only sped up after the light.

Now I was wondering if I have any chance of winning this case because I have disputed it.

Also, approximately how long does it take for the notice to arrive? I am hoping to take my road test before that. (I've been pulled over once before for speeding and been driving safely since, this additional ticket could have my license suspended and I would have to redo 2 years of being a novice driver)

Please look at your ticket and tell me what the wording and section number for the offence is.

In reply to by cruz (not verified)

Rights of way between vehicle and pedestrian

179 (1) Subject to section 180, the driver of a vehicle must yield the right of way to a pedestrian where traffic control signals are not in place or not in operation when the pedestrian is crossing the highway in a crosswalk and the pedestrian is on the half of the highway on which the vehicle is travelling, or is approaching so closely from the other half of the highway that he or she is in danger.

Crossing at other than crosswalk

180 When a pedestrian is crossing a highway at a point not in a crosswalk, the pedestrian must yield the right of way to a vehicle.

Section 179(1) is applicable to an intersection where there are no traffic lights or the traffic lights are not in operation. In your case, there were traffic lights and they were in operation, so this section has not been properly applied and that would likely be your best defence.

I am confused by your explanation however. If it was a red light why were you turning left? Was the cross street a one way street? Did you come to a full stop and what happened with the car in front of you? Which direction were the pedestrians traveling in? Had they entered the crosswalk when you went by or were they still on the sidewalk?

I don't know how long it will take for your notice of hearing to arrive. It would depend on how busy the court registry is. You could call them and ask.

I was going straight and not turning left. There are two lanes on the side of the street I was on, where I was on the outer lane, and the officer was on the lane closer to the sidewalk. The cross street wasn't a one way street and the pedestrians were crossing from my right, heading to the left.  I mentioned there was a car in front of me because that was the only car stopped in front of the red light at the moment and the officer question why I didn't stop like he had in front of the crosswalk (but he had cars in front of him stopping for the red light all the way to the crosswalk). They haven't entered the crosswalk at the time I was over the crosswalk, they only just got there and pressed the pedestrian crossing light.

Thanks for the information about the notice of hearing.

Sounds like I don't need to say more on this then, I'm not sure where I got the idea that you were turning left, sorry.

There is no need to yield to pedestrians that are not in the crosswalk unless you have to exercise care not to collide with them. The only other caution is that it is illegal to pass a vehicle that is slowing for or stopped for a pedestrian:

179 (3) If a vehicle is slowing down or stopped at a crosswalk or at an intersection to permit a pedestrian to cross the highway, the driver of a vehicle approaching from the rear must not overtake and pass the vehicle that is slowing down or stopped.

In reply to by DriveSmartBC

Thanks for all the useful information, much appreciated.