Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons (RRFBs)

rectangular-rapid-flashing-beaconsWhat are they?

Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons (RRFBs) are traffic safety warning devices that use LED lights to emit rapid flashing (wig-wag) lights to drivers to alert them of the presence of pedestrians in the crosswalk. Originally tested and used in Florida, they are now used in several states including Illinois.

RRFBs units are currently installed at the intersection of Wilmette Avenue and Prairie Avenue.

How are they used?

It is important to know that RRFBs are not traffic control devices but, rather, are advanced safety features that help pedestrians alert motorists to their presence within the crosswalk. The lights are activated via push button used by the pedestrian as they begin to cross the roadway. Pedestrians are expected to wait until there is a sufficient gap in traffic before entering the crosswalk. The LED lights are timed to allow enough time for the pedestrians to completely cross the roadway. Drivers are expected to follow State law and yield to pedestrians that are in the crosswalk.

The units are solar powered so they will not be subject to power interruption during power outages.

Safety Features of RRFBs

Studies have found that RRFBs have been able to improve the rate at which drivers yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk from 10-20% to 70-85%. To view these studies and to find more information on the safety of RRFBs, please visit the FHWA Safety webpage one RRFB units at:

http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/intersection/resources/techsum/fhwasa09009/

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