THE SENATE

S.B. NO.

926

THIRTY-SECOND LEGISLATURE, 2023

S.D. 1

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

RELATING TO PEDESTRIANS.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


SECTION 1. The legislature finds that current statutes relating to pedestrians are needlessly restrictive. Fines for pedestrians can have a disproportionate impact on people who do not drive and who primarily rely upon walking as a means of transportation. The legislature notes that, in many situations, the perception and judgment of pedestrians can be more effective in mitigating injuries than traffic lights or street markings. The legislature additionally finds that pedestrians should be trusted to cross the street when the absence of oncoming traffic makes it reasonably safe to cross, even if the decision to cross the street requires pedestrians to act contrary to existing traffic rules; provided that pedestrians use reasonable care in making such crossings.

The legislature further finds that there are numerous benefits to walking, which can include greater physical longevity, lower personal expenses for transportation, and a decrease in the carbon dioxide entering the atmosphere. Further, California, with the support of over ninety pedestrian advocacy groups, passed the Freedom to Walk Act in 2022, which substantially relaxed enforcement of pedestrian street-crossing violations and makes California's streets more walkable.

Accordingly, the purpose of this Act is to provide pedestrians with greater freedom by allowing them to cross the street when a reasonably careful pedestrian would consider it safe to do so.

SECTION 2. Chapter 291C, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to part VII to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"291C-   Freedom to walk; absence of an immediate danger. (a) Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, a pedestrian shall not be stopped by a law enforcement officer, fined, or subjected to any other penalty, for acting contrary to this chapter, unless a reasonably careful pedestrian would determine that there is an immediate danger of a collision with a moving vehicle.

(b) This section shall not relieve a pedestrian from the duty of using due care for their safety and the safety of others.

(c) This section shall not relieve a driver of a vehicle from the duty of exercising due care for the safety of any pedestrian within the roadway."

SECTION 3. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 4. This Act shall take effect on March 22, 2075.


 


 

Report Title:

Pedestrians; Safety; Street Crossing

 

Description:

Authorizes pedestrians to cross a street when a reasonably careful pedestrian determines that there is no immediate danger from a collision with a vehicle. Takes effect 3/22/2075. (SD1)

 

 

 

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