By
Pace Law

Everyone Is Accountable In Pedestrian Safety

October 30, 2018

A person walks across an intersection, head down, texting. He is hit by a car. Is the driver at fault?

 

As I’ve stated before in this blog, the answer is: most likely yes. Pedestrians are in fact so vulnerable in the situation of collision with a vehicle, that the law is designed to encourage hyper vigilance while driving near people who are walking on the street. Section 193(1) of the Highway Traffic Act applies a “reverse onus” requiring the driver of a motor vehicle who collides with a pedestrian or cyclist to prove, that the resulting accident was not due to negligence or misconduct. More simply put, a motorist is always deemed at fault until he/she can prove there was no way to avoid the collision.

 

But, here is a question to consider as part of our duty to protect foot-travellers: Do we need to be more liberal in the way we approach the reverse onus when it comes to inattentive pedestrians whose reliance on technology increases daily?

 

From Honolulu, USA to Augsburg, Germany law makers are trying to address this issue. Some jurisdictions are slapping fines on distracted walkers, others are working on large scale PR campaigns to educate the public on the dangers that come from walking head down.

 

My view is that it is only a matter of time until Ontario incorporates stiffer penalties for distracted pedestrians and cyclists. At a minimum, I think we can expect something as simple as the introduction of fines. On the more extreme side, it is conceivable that we could see cases where the motor vehicle driver sues the injured pedestrian who clearly put himself/herself in harm’s way.

Everyone is legally accountable, or will be, eventually.

Share This Post
Email
Facebook
LinkedIn
Twitter
Trending Posts
Read More Insights
Events
By
Pace Law
Pace Law Firm is always looking to expand our business and elevate it to the next level. On Thursday November 24th, Pace Law Firm attended the Canadian Mortgage Summit (CMS) to hear from the industry’s top mortgage brokers, lenders and solution providers.
Firm News
By
Pace Law
We are proud to announce that Pace Law has become a multi-service firm and is launching a new website to accommodate our growth in different areas of law!
Events
By
Pace Law
The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation takes place on September 30th for the second consecutive year. Each year, September 30th marks both Orange Shirt Day and National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.
Real Estate Law
By
Pace Law
In key Canadian cities, the housing inventory may reach a crisis stage, according to a recent analysis from RE/MAX Canada. The analysis confirms that governments must take quick action to address the critically low supply of available homes.
Personal Injury
By
Pace Law
As the winter months get closer, it is critical to plan ahead and take precautions as needed to reduce the likelihood of mishaps. Nearly 30% of all motor vehicle incidents, according to recent RCMP data, happened on slick, snowy, or icy roadways.
Real Estate Law
By
Pace Law
Two weeks after the provincial administration submitted Bill 109, the More Homes for Everyone Act, 2022, on March 30, 2022, it obtained royal assent on April 14. The last step needed for a legislative measure to become law is royal assent.

Get in Touch

Call us now or fill out the form to discuss your case with an experienced legal professional.

Our Locations

Office Location

191 The West Mall, Suite 1100
Toronto, ON M9C 5K8
Phone: 1-877-236-3060
Fax: 416-236-1809

Office Location

191 The West Mall, Suite 1100
Toronto, ON M9C 5K8
Phone: 1-877-236-3060
Fax: 416-236-1809

Scroll to Top