What Are The Rules About Hitchhiking In British Columbia?

While hitchhiking is legal in British Columbia, anyone that plans to hitchhike in that Canadian province ought to become familiar with the rules for hitchhikers. There are times when a hitchhiker’s actions might be declared illegal.

Where hitchhikers can and cannot stand?

In British Columbia, it is not legal to assume the stance of a hitchhiker along the surface of a roadway. The government has defined a roadway as the portion of a road where vehicles travel.

On the other hand, hitchhikers do have the right to stand on a road’s shoulder. The shoulder is the grassy or concrete section that is called a curb. That exception to the rule that was stated in the preceding paragraph gets enforced as a means for promoting pedestrian safety.

Exceptions to the exception

One exception was created to promote the safety of the typical pedestrian. That exception allows any hitchhiker to stand on the curb in a roadway. Yet the hitchhikers’ rights should not put any driver at risk. That fact explains the need for the exceptions to the exception.

Personal Injury Lawyer in Richmond know that no one has permission to stand on the curb of a freeway or a Schedule One highway, except under one circumstance. A driver does have the right to stand in such a location, if his or her vehicle happens to be out-of-commission.

Specific rules for hitchhikers

• While walking along a road or highway, use a sidewalk, if there is one. In the absence of a sidewalk, walk along the extreme left shoulder.
• Always walk so that you are facing traffic, but do not face forward, while walking backwards.
• Do not solicit a ride, while walking along a highway, unless you are dealing with an emergency situation.

Sections in the rules where a hitchhiker might seek clarity from authorities.

The government has not offered any specifics, regarding the nature of an emergency situation. Does someone’s desire to get home in the absence of a car qualify as an emergency situation?

What if a pedestrian were traveling on a dirt road? It would have no grassy or concrete curb. Where should that same pedestrian stand, in the event that he or she wanted to hitchhike?

Are there any rules for motorists that want to offer a ride to a pedestrian, even one that has not solicited such a ride? Could a pedestrian get in trouble for accepting a ride? Wouldn’t the motorist have good reason to assume that the pedestrian was dealing with an emergency?

How would someone from outside of British Columbia be able to recognize a Schedule One highway? How could a hitchhiker’s path remain away from Schedule One highways, if that same pedestrian/hitchhiker did not know the distinguishing features of such roadways?