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How Push 2 Cross Devices Protect Pedestrians

January 27, 2020

Pedestrians are sometimes overlooked by drivers who only look left while turning right. Drivers distracted by smartphones can also be a threat to people entering crosswalks. Nightime has proven to be the most dangerous period. An effective solution to reducing these tragedies is to adopt Push 2 Cross systems that use flashing lights to alert drivers about foot traffic.

Rising Pedestrian Deaths Call for Action

From 2008 ro 2017 pedestrian fatalities on roadways steadily rose from 12 to 16 percent, according to statistics reported by the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS). In 2017 alone, nearly 6,000 pedestrians were killed by vehicles, equating to an average of one death per 88 minutes or over 16 persons per day. In 2008, the pedestrian casualty toll was 4,414.

Only 18 percent of these accidents occurred at intersections, mostly at night. A third of these collisions happened between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. The fact that 80 percent of the deaths took place in urban rather than rural environments is a wake up call for officials to address this growing problem.

Other stunning stats reveal that the states with the most pedestrian fatalities are Nevada, New York, California and Arizona. Interestingly, cities with widely used public transportation rail systems such as New York City and San Francisco have low fatality rates per 100,000 population. Phoenix has the highest rate (6.3) in the nation for pedestrian casualties.

In Los Angeles, pedestrian injuries and deaths increased by over 70 percent in 2018. Although Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Vision Zero plan to eliminate L.A. pedestrian deaths has led to a drop in automobile crashes, pedestrian accident incidents have surged.

About 20 percent of these mishaps in the city have occurred in the neighborhoods of West Hollywood and Venice. Of the 22 pedestrian fatalities in 2018, homeless people accounted for 13. According to the LAPD, 91 percent of these tragedies were the fault of the pedestrian.

Push 2 Cross Solution

One way to reduce traffic hazards at intersections with crosswalks is to deploy electronic systems that make drivers more aware of non-drivers. Trafficalm’s technology uses a Rectangular Rapid Flash Beacon (RRFB) system with flashing LED lights around pedestrian signs. The signs are typically placed at intersections but can be used for other areas such as mid-blocks or near schools.

The Push 2 Cross system is MUTCD compliant and is used by various cities. Its TC Connect technology provides a secure WiFi connecton that doesn’t need an internet connection or software, as it works with any browser-enabled device. The solar or AC powered system, which integrates with a SignAlert Controller, includes many modern features such as 80 Hi Intensity Amber LEDS with embedded 15 degree UV resistance lens.

People will recognize the Push 2 Cross installations as regular push-button crosswalk signs at intersections. The main differences that stand out are solar panels and flashing lights around a pedestrian sign. Two devices – a controller and a collaborator – form a communications network for two-way lights at crosswalks.

Furture of Smart Crossing Systems

Smart technology is rapidly improving as local governments are adopting “smart city” infrastructure. This shift includes using electronic communication devices that are increasingly becoming a part of traffic control systems for safety and economic efficiency reasons. New systems that are being implemented in Austria use electronic ped crossing signs that replace buttons with cameras that detect people waiting to enter a crosswalk. These systems stay green longer based on crosswalk use as opposed to timed systems.

Contact Zumar at our Arizona, California or Washington location for more information on how to make your community safer with state-of-the-art traffic control solutions.

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