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Public Works

Audible Pedestrian Signals

The standard audible pedestrian installation is intended for every traffic signal regardless of where it is located (residential or commercial or industrial area). It is also intended to operate at the same time as the signal operates up to 24 hours a day 7 days a week 365 days a year under any weather conditions.

This standard is a set of compromises that tries to balance the needs of the community, equipment reliability, equipment maintainability, and engineering due diligence standards:

  1. The need for installation anywhere requires as unobtrusive as possible an installation while maintaining reachable pushbuttons;
  2. The need for reliability requires that vandal proofing is one primary consideration. The pushbutton design, speaker design and speaker location are all selected for vandal proofing considerations;
  3. The need to use standard off the shelf commercial products that function properly and reliably in our climate;
  4. The need to comply with standards set out in the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices one primary consideration.

How Do I Use Audible Pedestrian Signals?

Step Action Result
1 Listen for the ticking locator tone. If you can hear the locator tone you are within 10 feet of the pole at an intersection with an audible signal.
2 Locate the push button mounted on the pole facing the direction you wish to cross. You are ready to push the button.
3 Push the button for 3 or more seconds until the acknowledge sound is heard for a short time. The ticking noise will continue until the "okay to walk" signal. Wait until you hear a change to either a peep or a coo. That means it is safe to walk. The peep or coo will stay on for the duration of the walk light or 10 seconds whichever is shorter.
4 If you hear the coo sound you are facing the North-South walking directions. If you hear the peep sound you are facing the East-West walking directions. Choose the appropriate direction and safely cross the intersection.

What do I do if I encounter an Audible Signal that is malfunctioning?

Step Action Result
1 Audible signals are intended to operate at the same time as any pedestrian traffic signal operates. If they are not operating properly you should phone the non - emergency police line at 311 and clearly report the problem. The police will report the problem to Traffic Signals or will pass your telephone call along to a service that will record your information and contact Traffic Signals for assistance.
2 Types of things to report include:
a. Your name and phone number
b. The exact location of the malfunctioning signal
c. If the audible device is too loud or to quiet to allow you to use it to safely cross the street
d. That the background traffic noise may be causing the locater tone to be louder than it needs to be
This will assist the Traffic Signals to locate and correct the problem in a time efficient manner.

Last update: July 6, 2018