Changes To The Highway Code For Pedestrians

Welcome to our guide on changes to the Highway Code for pedestrians. As of the 29th of January 2022, there have been a number of alterations and updates to the Highway Code relating to vulnerable road users. These changes affect all categories of road users. 

This article will be going over those changes, and how they could affect your ability to make a claim if you’re injured in a road traffic accident. If you have any questions at any point, then get in touch with our advisors. We are here and waiting to help you in any way we can.

Changes to the Highway Code for pedestrians

Changes to the Highway Code for pedestrians

Once we know more about the circumstances surrounding your injury, we will be able to offer you specific advice regarding whether or not you could have a valid claim. Then, provided you do have grounds to sue, we may be able to connect you with an expert personal injury solicitor from our panel.

Read on for more information. Below, you’ll also find the ways you can reach us.

Select A Section

  1. What Are The Changes To The Highway Code For Pedestrians?
  2. Pedestrians Crossing Or Waiting To Cross At Junctions
  3. Protecting Pedestrians Walking In Shared Spaces
  4. What Other Changes To The Highway Code For Pedestrians Do You Need To Be Aware Of?
  5. Pedestrian Accident Compensation Calculator
  6. Talk To Us About No Win No Fee Pedestrian Accident Claims

What Are The Changes To The Highway Code For Pedestrians?

The changes that have been made to the Highway Code focus heavily on the safety of vulnerable road users such as pedestrians and cyclists. Attention is drawn to the fact that they should have right of way in a number of scenarios on the road.

The Hierarchy Of Road Users

There is now a new hierarchy of road users. The changes to the Highway Code means that pedestrians are placed at the top of this hierarchy. This means that they have right of way ahead of all other road users, due to their higher levels of vulnerability.

Motorists will often have the added protection of being inside a vehicle and motorcyclists are often wearing safety equipment. Therefore, they fall lower on the hierarchy as they have the potential to cause harm to road users who are higher on the hierarchy.

In short, the lower a road user is on the hierarchy, the more responsibility they have to keep other road users safe. However, this does not mean that those nearer the top of the hierarchy, such as pedestrians, can act any way they please. They still must act with care and consideration to others. Otherwise, they could still be the cause of accidents.

For more information on the way that these changes to the Highway Code for pedestrians can affect compensation claims, speak with a member of our team today.

Pedestrians Crossing Or Waiting To Cross At Junctions

Due to changes in the Highway Code, pedestrians now have right of way in more scenarios on the road. One of the most prominent of which is when a pedestrian is waiting to cross the road at a junction. If it is safe, motorists should allow pedestrians to cross if they are waiting to do so. 

The same is true if a pedestrian is already crossing the road. Motorists should slow or stop to allow them to finish crossing safely. This latter suggestion is not necessarily a new addition to the Highway Code, but it is bringing the guideline more to the forefront of people’s minds.   

Protecting Pedestrians Walking In Shared Spaces

Sometimes, a route will be used by pedestrians and cyclists. In these situations, cyclists have the potential to cause greater harm to a pedestrian, in part due to the speed at which they’re travelling. Because of this, they are lower on the hierarchy of road users than cyclists. 

Cyclists should avoid passing too close to pedestrians and other road users like horseback riders. They should give way to pedestrians when using these shared paths. 

If cyclists do overtake pedestrians, they should so do at a lower speed, particularly when passing from behind. Cyclists are expected to sound their bell or call out to alert other road users of their presence.

Cyclists should also be aware that pedestrians might be deaf, blind or partially sighted. For this reason, they should always pass with care even after sounding their bell or calling out.

Additionally, pedestrians are expected not to obstruct others in the space or act in a way that could cause an accident.

What Other Changes To The Highway Code For Pedestrians Do You Need To Be Aware Of?

There is now also a technique for opening car doors being encouraged called the Dutch Reach. This is when the driver or passenger opens their car door by using the hand furthest from it. For example, if the driver is exiting from the right-hand door, they should lean across and use their left hand.

By doing this, it also repositions the eye line of whoever is exiting the vehicle and can increase the chances of them spotting an oncoming cyclist or pedestrian. It is part of a driver’s duty of care to check before opening a car door, as it could injure a passer-by if they are not expecting it to open. For example, someone may be knocked off their bicycle.

For more guidance on the changes to the Highway Code for pedestrians and how this affects the duty of care that road users owe to one another, get in touch with our team today.

Pedestrian Accident Compensation Calculator

There is no singular answer to the question, “how much compensation do you get for a pedestrian accident?”. This is because every claim is unique, with its own set of circumstances. One claimant’s injuries may be much worse than another’s, for example.

The amount that’s awarded to the victim to account for the physical and psychological damage that the accident has caused is referred to as general damages. It’s calculated with the help of a publication called the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG).

Within the JCG is a list of injuries and what they could be worth in general damages. These brackets are based on compensation that has been awarded in the past. It’s also important to remember that these amounts are not definite. 

We have included some example amounts from the JCG in the table below.

InjuryDescriptionAmount
Mental anguish(E) The fear that you are about to die, or may die soon£4,380
Paralysis(b) Paraplegia - the amount awarded will depend on things like the level of pain and impact on other areas of life such as sexual function and mental health£205,580 to £266,740
Head/brain(e) Minor - cases involving minor brain damage, if any at all £2,070 to £11,980
Eye(d) One eye completely lost£51,460 to £61,690
Chest(d) An injury along the lines of a single penetrating wound with some lasting damage, but not lasting effect on the function of the lungs£11,820 to £16,860
Neck(c) Minor - (iii) when a complete recovery is made within 3 monthsUp to £2,300
Back(a) Severe - (i) cases in this bracket will cause a combination of serious consequences that are not usually found in back injury cases. £85,470 to £151,070
Shoulder(e) Clavicle fracture£4,830 to £11,490
Arm(d) A simple forearm fracture£6,190 to £18,020
Thumb(q) Complete loss£33,330 to £51,460

You could also be compensated for the monetary loss experienced that can be tied directly to your injury. These amounts are compensated through a part of your claim called special damages.

Examples can include:

  • Loss of earningsyou may have missed time at work because of your injuries.
  • Damage to property – for example, if your phone was destroyed in the accident.
  • Medical costs – prescription painkillers or walking aids, etc.
  • Travel costs – taxis, busses, trains that are required to get you to and from your medical appointments.

You’ll need to present evidence as part of your special damages claims process. Payslips and receipts are good ways of proving these losses and expenditures. Without evidence, you might not receive the full amount of special damages that you’re entitled to. 

Talk To Us About No Win No Fee Pedestrian Accident Claims

You may be worried about your ability to afford legal representation when making a personal injury claim. Whilst it is legally permitted to claim without a lawyer, the presence of a legal professional could make the process more straightforward.

A No Win No Fee arrangement is an agreement between you and your solicitor. It sets out the conditions that they need to meet before being paid. 

All of the solicitors on our panel work on a No Win No Fee basis. This means that you only pay your solicitor if they are successful in helping you make a claim. Once your settlement has been decided, your lawyer is paid in the form of a small percentage taken from the compensation you receive. 

If your No Win No Fee claim does not succeed, then you aren’t obligated to cover your lawyer’s costs. You also won’t be asked to pay them anything in order for them to start working on your claim or as it progresses. 

Get in touch today to see if you could be represented by a solicitor from our panel with a No Win No Fee agreement in place. They could also offer information on the changes to the Highway Code for pedestrians and how this might affect your claim. 

Pedestrian Accident Claim Resources

We have included links to some additional information that may help you.

  1. Someone could make a claim on your behalf in some circumstances; they’re known legally as a litigation friend.
  2. The Highway Code is available in full on the Government website.
  3. NHS information on signs of a broken bone.
  4. Another of our guides on the topic of claiming as a pedestrian in a car accident.
  5. Read about the main causes of pedestrian accidents.
  6. Claiming as a pedestrian after being run over.

Thank you for reading our guide on changes to the Highway Code for pedestrians.

Guide by AI

Publisher ET