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File #: 19-2316    Version: 1 Name: 12/2/19 Resolution to Endorse State's "White Cane" Crosswalk Law
Type: Resolution Status: In Committee
File created: 12/2/2019 In control: Transportation Commission
On agenda: 12/2/2019 Final action:
Enactment date: Enactment #:
Title: Resolution to Endorse Moving the State's "White Cane" Crosswalk Law Language from the Traffic Code to the Vehicle Code in State Law
Sponsors: Kathy Griswold


Resolution to Endorse Moving the State’s “White Cane” Crosswalk Law Language from the Traffic Code to the Vehicle Code in State Law


Councilmember Griswold and the Policy Agenda Committee have asked to have this change in state law added to the Council Agenda for their review. The intent of the endorsement is to encourage the state’s “White Cane” cross walk law removed from the Traffic Code, where it is optionally adopted by local governments, and added to the Vehicle Code where it would be mandatory statewide.

The “White Cane” law currently reads as follows:

Stopping for blind pedestrians; violation as misdemeanor. (1) Any driver of a vehicle who approaches within 10 feet of a person who is wholly or partially blind, who is carrying a cane or walking stick that is white or white tipped with red, or who is being led by a guide dog wearing a harness and walking on either side, or slightly in front, of the blind person shall immediately come to a full stop and shall take precautions before proceeding as may be necessary to avoid accident or injury to the wholly or partially blind person. (2) A person who violates this rule is guilty of a misdemeanor. 18 R 28.1716 Rule 716. Drivers; exercising due care; violation as civil infraction. (1) Notwithstanding the foregoing provisions of this part, every driver of a vehicle shall exercise due care to avoid colliding with any pedestrian on any roadway, shall give warning by sounding the horn when necessary, and shall exercise proper precaution upon observing any child or any confused or incapacitated person on a roadway. (2) A person who violates this rule is responsible for a civil infraction


Prepared by:  John Fournier, Assistant City Administrator

Approved by: John Fournier, Assistant City Administrator


Whereas, The City of Ann Arbor is committed to providing the safest right-of-way experience for pedestrians in our City;


Whereas, Those in our community who may be visually impaired deserve the right to enjoy our pedestrian spaces in the safest possible as well;


Whereas, Current State Law provides for a so-called “White Cane” law that requires drivers to slow down and take extra precautions around pedestrians who may be visually impaired; and


Whereas, This language as it stands would provide a much stronger protection for pedestrians if it were included in the state’s Michigan Vehicle Code;


RESOLVED, That the City of Ann Arbor endorses moving the State of Michigan’s so-called “White Cane” law to the Michigan Vehicle Code, and directs the City Administrator to communicate this endorsement to Ann Arbor’s State Legislative Delegation and to otherwise direct the resources of the city to support this bill’s passage.


Sponsored by:  Councilmember Griswold