What Are The Georgia Right of Way Laws?

What Are The Georgia Right of Way Laws?

No matter if you’re a driver, a pedestrian, or simply someone interested in understanding the legal dynamics of sharing the road, Cheves Briceno is here to guide you through the maze of regulations that govern pedestrian right-of-way Georgia laws. With an aim to enhance safety, prevent accidents, and foster coexistence between motorists and pedestrians, we will explore the key provisions of Georgia right-of-way laws, shedding light on their implications and providing practical insights to help you navigate the state’s streets with confidence and awareness. 

right of way pedestrian accident

What Does "Right of Way" Mean?

A right-of-way law for motorists refers to a set of legal principles and regulations that dictate who has the “priority” or “privilege” to proceed first in a given traffic situation. Georgia right-of-way laws establish the hierarchy of movement on the road, outlining which vehicles have the lawful authority to proceed before others in specific scenarios such as intersections, crosswalks, and merging lanes.

These laws aim to ensure orderly and safe traffic flow by assigning clear rights and responsibilities to drivers, helping to prevent collisions and maintaining efficient transportation systems. By understanding and adhering to Georgia right-of-way laws, motorists can navigate the roads with predictability, reducing the risk of accidents and promoting smoother interactions with other drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists.

What Are the Basic Georgia Right of Way Laws?

In the state of Georgia, there are several basic right-of-way laws that apply to both motorists and pedestrians. Here are some of the key provisions to know:

  • Crosswalks: When pedestrians are within a crosswalk, vehicles are required to yield the right of way. 
  • Traffic Signals: Motorists must yield to pedestrians who have a “Walk” signal or a green light indicating their right of way.
  • Turning Vehicles: When making a turn at an intersection or into a driveway, drivers must yield to pedestrians who are crossing the street they are turning onto.
  • School Zones: In school zones or at marked school crossings, vehicles must yield to pedestrians crossing the road.
  • Blind or Visually Impaired Pedestrians: Motorists must yield to individuals who are visually impaired and using a white cane or guide dog at all times, regardless of Georgia right of way laws and regulations.
  • Emergency Vehicles: Motorists must yield the right of way to emergency vehicles displaying flashing lights or sounding sirens. 

It’s important to note that these are just some of the fundamental right-of-way laws in Georgia. The state’s traffic laws encompass a broader range of regulations, and it’s advisable to consult the official Georgia Code or seek legal advice from one of our Atlanta pedestrian accident attorney team members for a comprehensive understanding of the specific rules and circumstances.

What Are the More Detailed Georgia Right of Way Laws?

In addition to the basic motorist and pedestrian right-of-way Georgia laws, the state of Georgia has some more detailed and unique provisions that govern the interactions between motorists and pedestrians. Here are some of the notable ones to point out:

  • Unmarked Crosswalks: Georgia law recognizes that crosswalks exist at all intersections, whether or not they are marked. Vehicles must yield the right of way to pedestrians crossing at these unmarked crosswalks.
  • Shared-Use Paths: Georgia law treats shared-use paths, such as sidewalks and multi-use trails, as extensions of the roadway. Motorists must yield to pedestrians and bicyclists using these paths when entering or crossing them.
  • Overtaking a Stopped School Bus: When a school bus is stopped with its stop-arm extended and red lights flashing, all vehicles must stop in both directions on undivided roadways, regardless of the presence of a pedestrian. This law is designed to protect children who are boarding or exiting the bus. Large fines are given to those who break the law.
  • Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon (PHB): A PHB is a special type of traffic signal used at crosswalks. When a PHB is activated by a pedestrian, it displays a series of flashing lights to alert motorists to stop. Vehicles must yield to pedestrians at these crosswalks when the PHB is activated.
  • Construction Zones: In work zones, where pedestrians may be present, motorists must yield the right of way to workers and follow any temporary traffic control devices, such as signs or flaggers.

These are just a few examples of the more detailed and unique Georgia right-of-way laws. An experienced Atlanta pedestrian accident attorney from Cheves Briceno will be able to provide further assistance on your case, depending on what right-of-way laws were broken.

What Are the Georgia Right of Way Laws for a 4-Way Stop?

At a four-way stop in Georgia, the right-of-way is determined by a specific set of rules outlined below:

  • First to Stop, First to Go: The vehicle that arrives at the intersection and comes to a complete stop first has the right of way. This rule applies regardless of whether the vehicle is on the right or left side of the intersection.
  • Right-Hand Rule: If two or more vehicles reach the intersection at the same time, the vehicle on the right has the right of way. It means that the vehicle to the right of another must be given priority to proceed first.
  • Straight over Turns: If two vehicles are facing each other and one intends to go straight while the other wants to make a left turn, the vehicle going straight has the right of way. The left-turning vehicle must yield until the way is clear.
  • Multiple Left Turns: If multiple vehicles are making left turns at the intersection, they must yield to oncoming traffic and pedestrians. Once the oncoming traffic has cleared, they can proceed with their left turn in the order they arrived at the intersection.


It’s important to note that if there are any yield or stop signs present at the intersection in addition to the four-way stop, those signs must also be followed accordingly. Adhering to Georgia right-of-way laws at a four-way stop helps ensure a smooth and safe flow of traffic, reducing the risk of accidents and promoting efficient intersection navigation for all.

How Can A Cheves Briceno Atlanta Pedestrian Accident Attorney Help You?

If you have been injured in a pedestrian right-of-way Georgia accident involving a right-of-way law violation, seeking the assistance of an Atlanta pedestrian accident attorney can be a vital step towards obtaining the justice and compensation you deserve. Our specialized attorneys possess the knowledge, experience, and expertise necessary to navigate the complexities of personal injury cases arising from right-of-way law violations. Our team can provide you with essential guidance throughout the legal process, from gathering evidence and assessing liability to negotiating with insurance companies and representing your interests in court, if necessary. 

An Atlanta pedestrian accident attorney will diligently work to build a strong case on your behalf, aiming to establish the negligence of the party at fault and demonstrate how the violation of Georgia right-of-way laws contributed to your injuries. By leveraging their skills and resources, an Atlanta pedestrian accident attorney can help you pursue the maximum compensation available for your medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages, ultimately striving to provide you with the support and legal advocacy needed to move forward with your life after your incident. Reach out to Cheves Briceno and submit a free consultation inquiry if you have been harmed or injured in a motorist or pedestrian right-of-way Georgia accident today.

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