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Pedestrian Traffic Control Devices
Crosswalk 5.JPG

There are four types of Pedestrian Traffic Control Devices used around the City of Flagstaff; Circular Flashing Beacon (CFB), Circular Rapid Flashing Beacon (CRFB), Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon (RRFB), and Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon (PHB), also referred to as the HAWK (High intensity Activated CrossWalK). All of the devices were selected for locations around Flagstaff based on the width of the roadway, the volume of vehicles on the roadway, the speed of vehicles on the roadway, and the volume of pedestrians crossing the roadway. These devices make drivers and pedestrians more aware of their surroundings.

All four of these devices essentially work the same.  When a pedestrian approaches an intersection they need to push the pedestrian button in order to activate the signal.  Some of the locations that have a pedestrian refuge (island) in the middle of the roadway have two buttons to push.

Circular Flashing Beacon (CFB)
The Circular Flashing Beacon is a traditional slow flashing circular warning beacon. There is currently one located on West St. and 6thAve., on the east side of town. This location was in need of a pedestrian traffic control device because there is a skate park on the northwest corner of the intersection and a high school approximately 2,000 feet north of the intersection.

Photo of circular flashing beacon on West Ave.
Circular Flashing Beacon on West Ave. and 6th St.


Circular Rapid Flashing Beacon (CRFB)

The Circular Rapid Flashing Beacon is currently being tested to determine if it can be added to the MUTCD along with the Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon. This device has been tested in two locations in Flagstaff, and is currently being tested at one other location which is on 4th St. near W.L. Gore. A pedestrian traffic control device was needed at this location due to the high volumes of workers at W.L. Gore. Gore has a building on the west and east side of 4th St., which causes employees to cross back-and-forth from building to building. The crosswalk is approximately 76 feet long and crosses four lanes of busy traffic, showing that the need for this device was essential to pedestrian safety.


Circular Rapid Flashing Beacon 4th Street
Circular Rapid Flashing Beacon on 4th St. near W.L. Gore

Circular Rapid Flashing Beacon 4th Street


Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon (RRFB)

The Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon is a rectangular shaped signal head that uses an irregular flash pattern that is similar to emergency flashers on police vehicles.  The RRFB’s are located at two locations in Flagstaff; on Cedar Avenue near Mt. Elden Middle School and on Butler Avenue near the Drury Inn.  Both of these locations were previous test sites for the CRFB’s and have yet changed back to the RRFB’s. 

As shown in the photos below, the pedestrian refuge was designed at an angle.  This is to “force” the pedestrian to push the next button rather than walking straight into the next lane(s) of traffic, and it gives the approaching vehicles time to see the pedestrian and come to a stop.


Rectangular rapid flashin beacon
Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon on Cedar Ave.


Rectangular rapid flashing beacon



Rectangular rapid flashing beacon
            Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon on Butler Ave.

Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon (PHB)

The Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon (PHB), also
referred to as the HAWK (High intensity
Activated CrossWalK), works like a typical
traffic signal. The purpose of the PHB is to
stop vehicles to allow pedestrians to cross
the roadway safely. The PHB consists of
has two red lenses over a single yellow
lens. Unlike the RRFB and CRFB, the PHB
uses a timing plan like a typical traffic
signal.  As shown to the right, there are
six different phases that the signal goes
through for every time that the button
is pushed.

There is so far only one PHB in the City
of Flagstaff.   It is located on West Street
near Coconino High School.  The primary
purpose for this signal is for the high 
school students coming and going from
the school.   


 HAWK on West
HAWK on West St. near Coconino High School

 Close up of HAWK