Campus Walkway Safety

No. 5-46     Rev. 12-04-12       Date: 05-13-03     



Unsafe conditions occur on campus walkways when wheeled vehicles are operated near pedestrians.  This policy establishes regulations for safe operation of vehicles on walkways.

Walkways for pedestrians are the principal means of travel between buildings and activities on campus.  People should be able to walk on the campus without feeling threatened by wheeled vehicles.  Where possible and practical, the university will provide a safe environment for persons walking the campus and will minimize hazardous conditions.

1.1  In 1997, the Utah Legislature passed House Bill 196 which requires that: a person operating any vehicle or device propelled by human power shall yield the right- of-way to any pedestrian and shall give audible signal before overtaking and passing a pedestrian.  A person may not operate any vehicle or device propelled by human power in a negligent manner so as to collide with any pedestrian or other person operating a vehicle or device propelled by human power.

The University Walkway Safety Policy establishes additional requirements for human powered and motorized vehicles, consistent with Utah Law, to promote safe conditions for pedestrians.

1.2  Definitions:

Operator - A person operating a moving vehicle.  The operator of a parked vehicle is the person responsible for parking the vehicle.

Pedestrian - Any person standing, sitting, reclining, or moving within the Pedestrian Zone.

Pedestrian Zone - An area officially designated to be used primarily by Pedestrians.

Vehicle - Any apparatus or equipment used to transport personnel and/or goods to include, but not limited to cars, trucks, in-line skates, unicycles, ATV's and golf carts.

Walkway - Any horizontal concrete ground surface or paved surface other than designated roads, service docks, or parking lots within the Pedestrian Zone. 


2.1  Appropriate Use of Vehicles on Walks

Sidewalks on the university campus are primarily for pedestrian travel.  Therefore, use of sidewalks for vehicular travel should be limited and closely monitored and used when no other alternative exists.

Most service functions can be accommodated at existing service docks and parking located at or near each building.  When an appropriate need can be established, special permits may be issued to operators of vehicles for restricted access on walkways (see 2.3).

2.2  Vehicles Permitted on Walks

For purposes of this policy legitimate uses include: Emergency Service Vehicles (fire, ambulance, police) when responding to emergencies and snow removal/maintenance equipment, and bicycles in designated zones (see PPM 5-47).  There may be other requests for sidewalk use that will be evaluated on an individual basis.  Each request is subject to the Permitting Process outlined in Section 2.3.

The operation of roller-skates, rollerblades, skateboards, motorcycles or motorized scooters on any walkway is prohibited at all times.

2.3  Operating Permits Required

Permits will be issued to operators (not vehicles) with legitimate need to drive on walkways.  The sidewalk request form can be downloaded in PDF format, including a campus map outlining fire lanes, from the University Policy Department's web site;  The individual requesting the permit must submit a sidewalk request form to the Campus Police Office, stating the reason that a sidewalk permit is necesssary and no other alternative will allow them to complete their business on the campus.  If the requesting individual is a campus employee, the request must be approved by the immediate dean or director of the requesting department.  When obtaining a permit, operators will read brief instructions on walkway safety and sign a statement acknowledging that any citations will be the personal responsibility of the operator.  Permits will be issued on a project duration basis, usually not more than one day in length.  University funds may not be used for the payment of citations issued for violation of this policy.

2.4  Operating Vehicles on Sidewalks

1.    Vehicles Limited
A Pedestrian Zone is established where the operation of vehicles on walkways will be limited.  Only operators possessing a valid permit may operate a vehicle in this area.    Vehicles will not be allowed to park on the walks unless no other alternative exists.  Within the zone, no vehicle (moving or parked) may impede pedestrian movement or cause unsafe conditions on walkways, stairways, or ramps.  No vehicle may impede pedestrian access to building entrances or exits.

2.  Speed Limit
When within 20 feet of any person, the speed of vehicles shall be no greater than FIVE miles per hour.  Operators may not overtake or pass moving pedestrians, except when pedestrians voluntarily yield to vehicles.  All vehicles utilizing the walks will at all times, while on the walks, have vehicle hazard lights in operation.

3.  All Vehicles Prohibited During Peak Pedestrian Traffic
All vehicles will be prohibited, with the exceptions of exigent circumstances, from operating or parking on walks within the Pedestrian Zone from 6:45 AM to 1:30 PM, Monday through Friday.  Wheelchairs or other assistive devices, used by persons with disabilities, may be operated at all times when operation conforms to requirements in Section 2.4.

2.5  Special Regulations for Golf Carts and ATV's

Golf carts and ATV's are prohibited on campus walkways without written approval from the Vice President of Administrative Services and must adhere to Sections 2.3 and 2.4(3) of this policy.  Any golf cart or ATV operating in parking lots or on the roadways must meet the Utah State Traffic Code as "Street Legal".  Golf carts may be used to facilitate the occasional movement of handicapped patrons. 


3.1  Operator Must Possess a Permit

Failure to possess a valid permit when operating a vehicle in the Pedestrian Zone will be a moving violation.

3.2  Moving Violations

Illegitimate use of walkways will be a moving violation against the vehicle operator and will be enforceable in the same manner as other traffic violations. 

The University Police will patrol the walkways of the Pedestrian Zone.  Citations will be issued to offenders.

3.3  Parking Violations

Vehicles, as defined in 1.2, parking in any location other than authorized parking facilities or stalls will be in violation of this policy.  Any vehicle that impedes pedestrian traffic or access ways for persons with disabilities such as pedestrian walks, ramps, exits and entrances to buildings, and stairways, will be subject to impoundment, towing and fines according to current parking fine schedules.