RESOLUTION 2010-01

Audible Pedestrian Signals
AMERICAN COUNCIL OF THE BLIND
RESOLUTION 2010-01

SUMMARY:

1. This organization directs its governmental relations staff and Environmental Access Committee to include in its comments on public rights-of-way support for a requirement that, at intersections where there are multiple accessible pedestrian devices, the audible signal phase for each signal must be unambiguously identifiable with its particular crossing.

2. In its comments, this organization shall include a recommendation that, where digital voice recordings are used for accessible pedestrian signals, differing voices be used to differentiate parallel and perpendicular crossings.

3. This organization’s comments shall include that the vibratory features making accessible pedestrian signals accessible to pedestrians who are dual sensory impaired shall be the standard in all locations where accessible pedestrian signals are installed.

WHEREAS, continuing development of complex intersections, combined with increasing numbers of quiet vehicles, has increased danger levels for pedestrians, and particularly those pedestrians who are blind, visually impaired, or multiply disabled blind; and

WHEREAS, accessible pedestrian signals have clearly shown the potential of reducing automobile-pedestrian accidents; and particularly those involving blind, visually impaired and disabled pedestrians; and

WHEREAS, it is essential that the differentiation between a signal for a parallel crossing and a signal for a perpendicular crossing is abundantly clear; and

WHEREAS, although current generation accessible pedestrian signals represent an improvement over the cuckoo and chirping signals of yesteryear, which are no longer being installed under current practices, it is a serious concern that current proposed standards do not require differing sounds or voices to differentiate signalizations for crossing parallel and perpendicular streets; and

WHEREAS, current proposed standards for positioning of accessible pedestrian signals allows for sound sources for crossing parallel and perpendicular streets to be placed as close together as ten feet; and

WHEREAS, a common error made by traffic engineers and electrical installers in installing accessible pedestrian signals is to place sound sources for the crossing of different streets closer together than ten feet, and sometimes even on the same pole; and

WHEREAS, people who are deaf-blind should also be accommodated through accessible pedestrian signals; and

WHEREAS, the United States Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board (The Access Board) will soon be opening a docket for comments on proposed rulemaking for public rights of way, which will include standards for accessible pedestrian signals;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the American Council of the Blind in convention assembled at the Downtown Sheraton Hotel in Phoenix, Ariz., on the 16th day of July, 2010, that this organization directs its governmental relations staff and Environmental Access Committee to include in its comments on public rights-of-way support for a requirement that, at intersections where there are multiple accessible pedestrian devices, the audible signal phase for each signal must be unambiguously identifiable with its particular crossing; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED by this organization that its comments shall include a recommendation that, where digital voice recordings are used for accessible pedestrian signals, differing voices be used to differentiate parallel and perpendicular crossings; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED by this organization that its comments shall include that the vibratory features making accessible pedestrian signals accessible to pedestrians who are dual sensory impaired should be the standard in all locations where accessible pedestrian signals are installed.

Adopted.

Marlaina Lieberg, Secretary