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‘HAWK’ pedestrian signal
A new type of traffic signal, called a HAWK pedestrian beacon, has been installed on Van Dorn Street at Maris Avenue. 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, in this case, to the DASH and Metrobus bus stop.
What is a HAWK signal?
The HAWK is technically a “beacon” in that it remains dark for traffic unless a pedestrian activates the pushbutton. When the pedestrian presses the button, approaching drivers will see a FLASHING YELLOW for a few second, indicating that they should reduce speed and be prepared to stop for a pedestrian in the crosswalk.
The FLASHING YELLOW is followed by a SOLID YELLOW and then by a solid RED, requiring them to STOP at the stop line. At this time, the pedestrian receives a WALK indication on the associated countdown timer. Visually impaired pedestrians will hear the signal indicate that it is safe to cross. 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.
What are the advantages of a HAWK?
Use of HAWK beacons in Alexandria
About Pedestrian Safety
While various treatments exist for these unsignalized crossings, there is growing concern that they are not effective – especially on streets with heavy, high-speed traffic.
The new HAWK signal is important because it includes a RED signal and early studies have shown up to 97% motorist compliance.
Citizen Questions & Concerns