Wisconsin Department of Transportation

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Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon (PHB) - How it works

PHB fact sheet

Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon (PHB) signals
  1. The beacon is DARK for motorists UNTIL pedestrians/bicyclists push the button to activate it AND pedestrians/bicyclists approaching the crosswalk see a steady “Don’t Walk” indication.
  2. When pedestrians/bicyclists press the button:
    • Motorists will see a FLASHING YELLOW indication for a few seconds, signaling that the beacon has been activated and motorists must proceed with caution.
    • Pedestrians/bicyclists will continue to see a “Don’t Walk” indication and must wait. If the beacon was recently activated, it might take up to one minute for the ”Walk” indication to come up.
  3. The flashing yellow is followed by a SOLID YELLOW indication.
    • Motorists should stop if able to safely do so.
    • Pedestrians/bicyclists will continue to see a “Don’t Walk” indication and must continue to wait.
  4. The solid yellow is followed by double SOLID RED indications
    • Motorists are required to come to a full STOP if they have not done so already.
    • Pedestrians/bicyclists receive a “WALK” indication and, if clear, begins crossing the road in the marked crosswalk.
  5. The double solid red is followed by alternating FLASHING RED indications (the last configuration in the sequence).
    • Motorists are required to STOP, or remain stopped, until pedestrians/bicyclists have finished crossing the street. They may proceed with caution after stopping once the crosswalk is clear of pedestrians/bicyclists.
    • Pedestrians/bicyclists already in the crosswalk continue crossing and will receive a numerical indication counting down the time remaining to finish crossing the street.
    • Newly approaching pedestrians/bicyclists may NOT start to cross on a flashing “Don’t Walk” indication, even if they think they have enough time to clear – they must push the button and wait for the next "WALK" indication.
  6. The beacon will then go DARK again until activated by another pedestrian/bicyclist.
    • Motorists may proceed through the crosswalk if it is clear.
    • Pedestrians/bicyclists see a steady “Don’t Walk” indication.

PHB animation

Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon (PHB) animation.

Note - Animation care of Wikipedia.

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Last modified: July 25, 2013

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