Safety and Operations of the Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon (HAWK) and Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon (RRFB)

Originally Presented on November 30, 2020

The Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon or HAWK beacon is a pedestrian-activated beacon located on the roadside and on mast arms over the major approaches to an intersection. The HAWK head consists of two red lenses over a single yellow lens. It displays a red indication to drivers when activated, which creates a gap for pedestrians to use to cross the major roadway. The beacon was created in Tucson, AZ and is currently used at 114 locations in that city. It is also being used in a number of other cities throughout the United States. 

The Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon (RRFB) is a midrange cost countermeasure for increasing yielding to pedestrians at marked crosswalks that traverse multilane roads with moderate to high vehicle volumes.  The device consists of high intensity yellow beacons (with a similar flash pattern to those installed on emergency vehicles) mounted on the pedestrian crossing signs.

Panelists shared information about the origin of these treatments and current installation and operational experiences.   

Presented by:

  • Richard Nassi, Pima Association of Governments
  • Kay Fitzpatrick, Texas Transportation Institute
  • Ron Van Houten, Western Michigan University

Webinar Resources: