If you’ve driven anywhere where people exist, you’ll know that there are moments when you might find yourself stuck because of the traffic around you.
- It is illegal to halt your progress on a dedicated crossing
- Fines apply – and they can be hefty
- It’s also illegal to stop at a children’s crossing or proceed before those crossing have left
Indeed, if you’re like me, you may have even ended up inadvertently halted while traversing a pedestrian or children’s crossing. And while it is embarrassing to have to mouth “sorry” and wave indignantly to passers-by, if you were to be in that situation while a police officer was nearby, you could find yourself in trouble, not just blushing from the awkwardness of the moment.
That’s because it is illegal to stop a vehicle on a pedestrian crossing or a children’s crossing – and the penalties can be quite severe.
The national model Road Rules 2014 outline this under 128A, but additional penalties may apply.
Below, we have outlined the potential ramifications if you were caught doing this act in each of the different jurisdictions across Australia.
In NSW it is an offence to: “Enter blocked children’s/pedestrian/marked footcrossing” under Road Rules 2014, Rule 128A. The fine is $283, and you could also face 2 demerit points (note — double demerits do not apply).
It is also an offence to: “Enter blocked children’s/pedestrian/marked foot crossing (school zone)”. The penalty is higher in a school zone, at $362 and 3 demerits, per Road Rules 2014, Rule 128A.
“Fail to stop or give way at a level crossing or unlawfully enter level crossing (natural person)” could cost you 4 demerits and $962.
There’s also the offence: “Fail to stop and remain stationary at children’s crossing”, which is surprisingly a lower penalty, at 3 demerits and $481.
Further: “Fail to give way to a pedestrian” could cost you 3 demerits and $337.
“Failing to stop for a pedestrian, or rider of a bicycle or personal mobility device on a children’s crossing”, under Queensland Road Rules—Section 80(2)(b) , could result in a $464 fine and 3 demerits.
Further, don’t go speeding through before those crossing have left that area, or else you risk: “Proceeding before a pedestrian, or rider of a bicycle or personal mobility device has left a children’s crossing,” which is again a 3 demerit point/$464 fine offence.
Finally, “Failing to give way to a pedestrian, or rider of a bicycle or personal mobility device on a pedestrian crossing,” is once more a $464 fine/3 demerits.
It’s all about children’s crossings in South Australia — often cutely referred to as Wombat or Koala Crossings, not to be confused with the actual areas where those animals may cross the road.
So, here are some of the rules:
- Failing to stop at the stop line at a children’s crossing – $499 fine, 3 demerits
- Proceed before sign holder indicates at children’s crossing – $423 fine, 3 demerits
- Proceed while a pedestrian or bicycle rider is on or entering children’s crossing – $499 fine, 3 demerits
Also note that in SA you will have to pay a Victims of Crimes Levy fee of $99 in addition to the above fines.
A couple of important laws you should know when it comes to pedestrian crossing laws in the West:
Failing to give way to a pedestrian at a designated crossing, at an intersection or when exiting a road – $300 fine, 3 demerits.
Failing to give way to a pedestrian at a children’s crossing – $300 fine, 4 demerits.
In the NT you would be committing an offence if you enter a blocked crossing.
Traffic Regulations rule 128A – Entering blocked crossings states: “A driver must not enter a children’s crossing, marked foot crossing or pedestrian crossing if the driver cannot drive through the crossing because the crossing, or a road beyond the crossing, is blocked.
Examples: The crossing, or a road beyond the crossing, may be blocked by congested traffic, a disabled vehicle, a collision between vehicles or between a vehicle and a pedestrian, or by a fallen load on the road.”
We couldn’t find the fine/penalty for this offence.
The island state has similar rules.
“Enter children’s crossing, marked foot crossing or pedestrian crossing when blocked or road beyond is blocked” is an offence in Tassie, with a $146.25 fine applicable. No demerits.
“Fail to give way to pedestrian or cyclist on pedestrian crossing” is also an offence, with a fine of $438.75 and 3 demerits.
Similar rules apply in our nation’s capital, under Road Rule 128A, Entering blocked crossing:
- (1) A driver must not enter a children’s crossing, marked foot crossing or pedestrian crossing if the driver cannot drive through the crossing because the crossing, or a road beyond the crossing, is blocked. Maximum penalty: 20 penalty units (court-imposed fine of $3200). The applicable road road – “Failing to stop and/or give way at a pedestrian, school or level crossing” may more likely apply, with a 3 demerit point impact.
Not intended as legal advice. Check with the relevant roads authority in your state or territory.