Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

Pedestrians

Safety education

Everyone plays a role in keeping our roadways safe. Responsible and positive behaviors help people arrive home safely.

When driving

Stop for people
  • Stop for people crossing at every intersection, even those without crosswalks or stop lights
  • Before making a turn, look in all directions for pedestrians
Watch for people walking at all times
  • Scan the road and sides of the road ahead for pedestrians
  • Look carefully behind your vehicle before backing up, especially for small children
Avoid distracted and aggressive driving
  • Never pass or drive around a vehicle that is stopped for pedestrians
  • Obey speed limits and come to a complete stop at STOP signs

When walking

Look before you cross
  • Look across all lanes for moving vehicles before proceeding
Make yourself visible to drivers
  • Stand clear of buses, hedges, parked cars or other obstacles before crossing
  • When possible cross in a well-lit area at night
Avoid dangerous and distracted behaviors
  • Don't solely rely on traffic signals; look for vehicles before crossing
  • Always walk on the sidewalk; if there is no sidewalk, walk facing traffic

Crosswalks

  • Drivers must stop for crossing pedestrians at marked crosswalks and at all intersections without crosswalks or stop lights.
  • Pedestrians must obey traffic-control signals at all intersections that have them.
  • Pedestrians must obey pedestrian control signals.
  • Vehicles stopped for pedestrians can proceed once the pedestrian has completely crossed the lane in front of the stopped vehicle.
  • Pedestrians must not enter a crosswalk if a vehicle is approaching and it is impossible for the driver to stop. There is no defined distance that a pedestrian must abide by before entering the crosswalk; use common sense.
  • When a vehicle is stopped at an intersection to allow pedestrians to cross the roadway, drivers of other vehicles approaching from the rear must not pass the stopped vehicle.

Crosswalk law

Read the full Crosswalk Law from Minnesota Statute 169.21.

Crash facts

View more information on the Minnesota Department of Public Safety website.

Pedestrian-vehicle crash trends

  • Pedestrian-vehicle crash rates are highest during morning and evening rush hours. The number of severe crashes spikes at 2 a.m.
  • October is traditionally the deadliest month for pedestrians.
  • The majority of crashes occur at intersections. Of these, the majority are at signalized intersections.
  • The majority of crashes occur on low-speed roadways (35 mph or less) and in urbanized areas, particularly Hennepin and Ramsey counties. The most severe and fatal crashes disproportionately occur in rural areas compared to population size.
  • Motorist behaviors that primarily cause pedestrian-vehicle crashes include failure to yield, inattention and distraction.
  • Pedestrian behaviors that primarily cause pedestrian-vehicle crashes include inattention, crossing mid-block, walking along the roadway and ignoring sign or signals.