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Today I was almost hit by a car when I was crossing a road at a crosswalk which is marked by painted lines when a car refused to stop. I know what the driver did was illegal but is there anything that the pedestrian can do about it?

Next time the best I can try is to remember the car's license plate number. But it will be impractical to take a video of the whole event to prove the guilt of the driver.

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  • My sympathies, and, yes, similar has happened to me many times, even on a university campus... Hopeless, I'm afraid. And don't trust ... or you'll get run over at some point. Jul 27 at 19:28
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    The best you can do is stop and don't cross the road.
    – gnasher729
    Jul 27 at 19:34

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I've seen media reports (evening news) in which pedestrians have provided anecdotal evidence to local television stations regarding crosswalk violations. Depending on how busy the station is with reporting tasks, it may become a suitable news piece.

In one report, the student (on an open campus) provided cell phone video to the station. I can't recall if mention was made regarding law enforcement, but the station performed an observation and a few interviews on site, then followed it up with another report that law enforcement had stepped up monitoring that specific area.

I've not been able to find online representation of this particular segment.

I'd also expect that the enforcement action provided only a brief respite to the violations.

In a nearby area known for enforcement actions, some of the crosswalks have flashing lights and an activation button, as well as hidden patrol cars for that community. I suppose the cost of the installation of the safety equipment might have been balanced by the increased safety of the community, but it's unlikely enforcement fines were used to compensate the installation costs.

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  • Thank you for the comment! For the crosswalk that I tried to cross today, there were flashing lights with an activation button and I pressed the button to make the lights flash. But the driver refused to stop anyway.
    – Zuriel
    Jul 27 at 19:40
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You can't sue since a "near miss" generally doesn't constitute an actionable civil wrong in these circumstances. Traffic laws are not enforceable in a private lawsuit.

Very few states have recognized the tort of "negligent infliction of emotional distress" (which was been conceived to address "near miss" in the "zone of danger" cases for distress to family members, where there was some other accident), in cases where there is not also a physical injury to or physical contact with someone else (Hawaii is pretty much the only one).

The best you can do is complain to the city about lack of enforcement, and perhaps shame the person who did it on social media.

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