A new type of traffic signal, called a Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon, provides a signalized pedestrian crossing at a mid-block location. While slightly different in appearance, this signal functions very similarly to a conventional pedestrian signal in that it stops traffic to allow pedestrians to cross safely.
What is a Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon
Pedestrian Hybrid Beacons (formally known as "HAWK Beacons") have been used safely and successfully in Tucson, AZ for more than five years. In the Atlanta region, the City of Suwanee and DeKalb County have installed Pedestrian Hybrid Beacons and have seen early successes. The Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon differs from a traditional traffic signal in that it remains dark unless a pedestrian activates the pushbutton at which time vehicular traffic is stopped.
The Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon Sequence
When the pedestrian presses the button, approaching drivers will see a FLASHING YELLOW for a few seconds indicating that they should reduce speed and be prepared to stop for a pedestrian in the crosswalk. This is followed by a SOLID YELLOW and then by a solid RED requiring drivers to STOP at the stop line. At this point, the pedestrian receives a WALK indication on the associated countdown timer. At the end of the WALK indication, the pedestrian is displayed a FLASHING DON’T WALK indication and motorist sees an ALTERNATING FLASHING RED. During this period, motorists are required to STOP or remain stopped until pedestrians have finished crossing the street, and then may proceed.
The sequence is shown graphically below:
Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon Sequence