Motorists and pedestrians in Minocqua have probably already noticed a new type of traffic control device along U.S. Highway 51.
It’s a pedestrian hybrid beacon that’s also referred to as a High Intensity Activated Cross-Walk (or “HAWK”).
The Wisconsin Department of Transportation is installing the device in several locations across the state to help pedestrians cross busy streets.
The Minocqua beacon, which will be activated today, Tuesday, July 30, will be used to stop traffic with a double red indicator, thereby creating a gap for pedestrians to cross.
Pedestrians will push a button to activate the beacon and will be required to wait until the “walk” indicator appears. Once the “walk” indicator appears and all motorists are stopped, the pedestrian will be allowed to cross.
While crossing, pedestrians will receive a flashing “don’t walk” and countdown indicator showing the time remaining to finish crossing the street. Newly-approaching pedestrians should not start to cross when the flashing “don’t walk” signal appears. They will be required to press the button and wait for the next “walk” indicator.
Motorists will notice the beacon is dark unless a pedestrian activates the push button. When activated, a flashing yellow indicator will run for a few seconds, notifying the motorists that the beacon has been activated and they must slow down. This is followed by a solid yellow indicator telling motorists they should stop if able to safely do so.
The solid yellow is followed by a double solid red indicator that will require vehicles to come to a complete stop.
Lastly, motorists will see alternating flashing red indicators. After first stopping, the motorists may proceed through the crosswalk during the flashing red indicators after the pedestrians have cleared the crosswalk. The indicators will go dark until a new pedestrian activates the beacon.
For more information, visit www.dot.wisconsin.gov and look under Travel Information.