Udo reports the case of a pedestrian who crossed the road when the light was red and was given a fixed penalty notice for 5 euros. He was seen by two policemen (and finished up paying a lot more because the deadline had passed).
I’ve lived here all this time and I never knew it was punishable.
How about the UK? You see signs on the road there saying ‘Look right’, so you know where to check there is no traffic before crossing.
The Highway Code contains some provisions which are subject to a penalty. They contain the words must or must not:
bq. Many of the rules in the Code are legal requirements, and if you disobey these rules you are committing a criminal offence. You may be fined, given penalty points on your licence or be disqualified from driving. In the most serious cases you may be sent to prison. Such rules are identified by the use of the words MUST / MUST NOT. In addition the rule includes an abbreviated reference to the legislation which creates the offence.
Not so the rules for crossing against the lights as a pedestrian:
bq. 21: At traffic lights. There may be special signals for pedestrians. You should only start to cross the road when the green figure shows. If you have started to cross the road and the green figure goes out, you should still have time to reach the other side, but do not delay.
Note should, not must.
See the comments to Udo’s entry. Is it a regulatory offence in Austria too? Doesn’t sound like it.