Article XII: Pedestrian Control

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Section 1.

PEDESTRIANS CROSSING WAYS OR ROADWAYS - Pedestrians shall obey the directions of police officers directing traffic and whenever there is an officer directing traffic, a traffic control signal or a marked crosswalk within three hundred (300) feet of a pedestrian, no such pedestrian shall cross a way or roadway except within the limits of a marked crosswalk and as hereinafter provided in these regulations. For the purpose of these regulations, a marked crosswalk shall only be constructed to be that area of a road that is reserved for pedestrian crossing located between two solid white reflectorized 12 inch pavement markings in rural areas or markings not less than six inches wide in urban area, said markings or lines being no less than six feet apart.

Section 2.


(a) At a traffic control signal location where pedestrian indications are provided but which are shown only upon actuation by means of a pedestrian push button, no pedestrian shall cross a roadway unless or until the pedestrian control signal push button has been actuated and then cross only on the proper pedestrian signal indication. If necessary, the green indication shall be actuated by the pedestrian by means of a push button.

(b) At a traffic control signal location, pedestrians shall yield the right of way to vehicles of a funeral or other procession or authorized emergency vehicles while in their performance of emergency duties regardless of the signal indication given. And they shall not attempt to cross the roadway until such vehicles or procession has passed at which time pedestrians shall then cross the roadway only as provided in these regulations.

Section 3.

PEDESTRIAN OBEDIENCE TO TRAFFIC CONTROL SIGNALS - Traffic control signal color indications and legends shall have the commands ascribed to them in this section and no other meanings, and every pedestrian shall comply therewith, except when otherwise directed by an officer.

(a) Red and Yellow or the Word “Walk” – Whenever the red and” is illuminated, pedestrians facing such indication may proceed yellow lenses are illuminated together or the single word “Walk across the roadway and in the direction of such signal only.

(b) Red Alone or “Don’t Walk” – Whenever the words “Don’t Walk” or any indication other than red and yellow shown together are illuminated in a traffic control signal where pedestrian indications are provided, pedestrians approaching or facing such indication shall wait on the sidewalk, edge of roadway or to the pedestrian refuge area of a traffic island and shall not enter upon or cross a roadway until the proper indication is illuminated in the traffic control signal, but any pedestrian who has partially completed his crossing on the walk indication shall proceed or return to the nearest sidewalk or safety island on the yellow indication, the red indication or when the words “Don’t Walk” are illuminated by rapid intermittent flashes.

(c) Green Alone – At traffic control signal locations where no pedestrian indication is given or provided, pedestrians facing the signal may proceed across the roadway within any marked crosswalk in the direction of the green indication.

(d) Yellow Alone, Red Alone or Flashing “Don’t Walk” – Pedestrians approaching or facing a yellow, red or flashing “Don’t Walk” illuminated indication shall not start to cross a roadway.

(e) Flashing Red, Yellow or Green – At any traffic control signal location is being given facing a crosswalk, pedestrians shall actuate, where provided, the pedestrian signal indication and cross the roadway only on the red-yellow or “Walk” indication when such indication is in operation. If no pedestrian signal is provided, pedestrians shall cross within crosswalks with due care.

Section 4.

VEHICLE OPERATION AT CROSSWALKS – See Chapter 89-11 Statute Law.

(a) When traffic control signals are not in place or not in operation, the driver of a vehicle, which for the purpose of this Article shall include bicycles, shall yield the right of way, slowing down or stopping as need be so to yield, to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within a marked crosswalk when the pedestrian is upon the half of the roadway upon which the vehicle is traveling or when the pedestrian approaches from the opposite half of the roadway to within 5 feet of the half of the roadway upon which the vehicle is traveling.

(b) No operator of a vehicle shall pass any other vehicle which has been stopped at a marked crosswalk to permit a pedestrian to cross a walk, nor shall any operator enter a marked crosswalk until there is sufficient space on the other side of the crosswalk to accommodate the vehicle he is operation notwithstanding any traffic control signal indication to proceed.

Section 5.


(a) No pedestrian shall suddenly leave a sidewalk or safety island and walk or run into the path of a vehicle which is so close that it is impossible for the driver to yield the right of way.

(b) Pedestrians shall at all times attempt to cross a roadway using the right half of crosswalks.

(c) Where sidewalks are provided, it shall be unlawful for any pedestrian to walk along and upon an adjacent roadway whenever the sidewalk is open to pedestrian use.

(d) Where sidewalks are not provided, any pedestrian walking along and upon a highway shall, when practicable, walk only on the left side of the roadway on its unfinished shoulder facing traffic, which may approach from the opposite direction.

(e) Persons alighting from the roadway side of any vehicle parked at the curb or edge of roadway shall proceed immediately to the sidewalk or edge of roadway adjacent to vehicle, and shall cross the roadway only as authorized by these regulations.

(f) It shall be unlawful for any person to actuate a pedestrian control signal or to enter a marked crosswalk unless a crossing of the roadway is intended.

Section 6

CROSSING AT NON-SIGNALIZED LOCATIONS – Every pedestrian crossing a roadway at any point other than within a marked crosswalk shall yield the right of way to all vehicles upon the roadway. At a point where a pedestrian tunnel or overpass has been provided pedestrians shall cross the roadway only by the proper use of the tunnel or overpass.

Section 7.

OPERATORS TO EXERCISE DUE CARE – The provisions of these regulations shall in no way abrogate the provisions of Chapter 90, Section 14 and 14A of the General Laws (Ter. Ed.) which provide: “Precautions for Safety of Other Travelers” and for the “Protection of Blind Persons Crossing Ways.” Furthermore, notwithstanding the provisions of these regulations every operator of a vehicle shall exercise due care to avoid colliding with any pedestrian upon the roadway and shall give warning by sounding the horn when necessary and shall exercise proper precautions which may become necessary for safe operation.

Section 8.

PEDESTRIANS SOLICITING RIDES OR BUSINESS – No person shall stand in a roadway for the purpose of distributing leaflets, soliciting, or soliciting a ride, employment or business from the operator or occupant of any vehicle without written permission of the Board or officer having control of such roadway or highway.

Section 9.

OFFICERS TO ENFORCE PEDESTRIAN REGULATIONS – These pedestrian control regulations shall be enforced by all officers of the Town of Arlington.

Section 10.

EXEMPTIONS – The provisions of these rules and regulations governing the use of ways by pedestrians shall not apply to pedestrians actually engaged in work upon a roadway closed to travel or under construction or repair, to municipal, state, federal or public service corporation employees while in the performance of their duties, to officers engaged in the performance of their public duties or to pedestrians acting when such an emergency necessitates departure from any part of these rules and regulations.

Section 11.

PENALTIES – Any person who violates the provisions of this Article which deals with the proper use of ways by pedestrians shall be punished as provided in Chapter 90, Section 18A of the General Laws (Ter. Ed.) as most recently added by Chapter 40 of the Acts of 1962. Any person convicted of a violation of any other provisions of these regulations relative to the operating of vehicles shall be punished by a fine not exceeding twenty ($20) dollars for each offense.

Section 12.

EFFECT OF REGULATIONS – All existing rules and regulations governing the operation of vehicles or the use of ways by pedestrians which are inconsistent herewith are hereby expressly repealed. This repeal shall not, however, affect any punishment or penalty imposed or any complaint or prosecution pending at the time of passage thereof any offense committed under any of the said rules and regulations hereby repealed.

If any section, sub-section, sentence, clause or phrase of these rules and regulations is for any reason unconstitutional, such decision shall not affect the validity of the remaining portion of these rules and regulations. The Board of Selectmen of the Town of Arlington hereby declare that they would have passed these rules and regulations and each section, sub-section, sentence, clause or phrase thereof, irrespective of the fact that any one or more sections, sub-sections sentences, clauses or phrases be declared unconstitutional.

Accepted: Aug. 30, 1999

                Arlington Selectmen     
                John W. Hurd    
                Kathleen Kiely-Dias     
                Charles Lyons   
                Kevin F. Greeley
A True Copy             Diane M. Mahon  

By:     Caryn E. Cove           
        Board Administrator             
Corrine M. Ranville             David W. McKenna        
Town Clerk              Safety Officer  
Permit No. RB-010 5134