Merced man hit by car, suffers major injuries. When do pedestrians have right of way?

A 63-year-old man suffered major injuries but is expected to survive after he was struck by a car at a Merced intersection.

Officers responded to reports of a vehicle striking a pedestrian on Sunday night at the intersection of G and 15th Streets, Merced police Sgt. Dan Dabney said.

A blue 2004 Chevrolet Monte Carlo driven by 67-year-old Merced resident Larry Nordman south on G Street at about 9:08 p.m. struck a 63-year-old homeless man who was crossing G Street from West 15th Street, Dabney said.

The Merced County pedestrian suffered major injuries to his head and legs, Dabney said. He was taken to Doctors Medical Center in Modesto.

There were no arrests and no citations were issued, and neither alcohol nor drugs were factors in the collision, Dabney said.

There is no crosswalk painted on the road at that intersection. But Dabney said pedestrians still have the right of way.

“We always recommend using a crosswalk because it has better visibility for that pedestrian as he is crossing the street,” Dabney said, citing Vehicle Code 21950(a). “But you can cross the street at an intersection if there is a crosswalk or not. You just have to do it with caution.”

Vikaas Shanker is an award-winning reporter covering education, crime and courts for the Merced Sun-Star and Los Banos Enterprise. After growing up in Naperville, Illinois and graduating from the University of Kansas, he reported in several Chicago suburbs before moving to Merced County in 2016.