Friday, April 7, 2017

A new step for pedestrians on State Route 1

This Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon, also referred to as a HAWK beacon, was installed by Caltrans in March 2017 on
State Route 1 (Pacific Coast Highway) in the Pacific Palisades neighborhood of Los Angeles
The Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon remains dark until it is activated by a pedestrian. First, the beacon
displays a flashing yellow warning, followed by a solid yellow, and then a solid red on two lenses.
The beacon is shown in use as a pedestrian crosses State Route 1 on March 30, 2017.

A new type of crosswalk beacon has been installed by Caltrans on State Route 1 (Pacific Coast Highway) in the Pacific Palisades neighborhood of Los Angeles.

The system is popularly known as a HAWK beacon (the acronym is derived from High-intensity Activated crossWalK).  More precisely, it is referred to as a Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon (PHB).


The installation is designed to provide superior awareness and enhanced safety when pedestrians use the crosswalk.


This is the second PHB in operation that was installed by Caltrans District 7, which includes the counties of Los Angeles and Ventura.  The first is on State Route 1 at Second Street in the city of Manhattan Beach.


When a pedestrian activates the button, the Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon uses flashing and solid lights to instruct drivers to stop.  As seen from a driver’s point of view, the configuration of the PHB consists of two red lenses side-by-side over a single yellow lens.


As described in a 2010 study by the Federal Highway Administration, the phase sequence is as follows:


The unit is dark until it is activated by a pedestrian. When pedestrians want to cross the street, they press a button that activates the warning flashing yellow….

After a set amount of time, the indication changes to a solid yellow light to inform drivers to prepare to stop. The device then displays a dual solid red light for drivers … and a walking person symbol (symbolizing WALK) for the pedestrians.
The beacon then displays an alternating flashing red light, and pedestrians are shown a flashing upraised hand (symbolizing DON’T WALK) with a countdown display advising them of the time left to cross. During the alternating flashing red operation, drivers can proceed after coming to a full stop and checking that pedestrians have already crossed their lane of travel.

The new PHB was installed in March 2017 on SR-1 north of Temescal Canyon Boulevard near Palisades Bowl Mobile Home Park.



Here is how the Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon works for drivers and pedestrians, step by step.