puffin crossing design (which are often called’smart’ or ‘intelligent’ crossings) have been around for over 20 years and are usually found on busier urban roads or those with higher speed limits. They look and work in a similar way to pelican crossings, however they use technology that detects pedestrians waiting to cross the road, effects the traffic lights sequence and only turns them green when it is safe for pedestrians to cross.
Puffin Crossings: A Smart Solution for Safe Pedestrian Crossings
They are set diagonally to the kerb, so pedestrians have a clear view of the road and the signals, allowing them to monitor traffic before crossing. The pedestrian signal box is placed on the same side of the road as the traffic light, rather than high up on a pole like at traditional Pelican crossings.
Pedestrians are warned when it is safe to start crossing by the red/ green figure signals being displayed on the black and yellow box. This is in addition to the green man/red man pedestrian crossing signal showing on the’smart’ traffic light which is operated by the sensors. Motorists are told that they should only proceed if the red person is shown, but drivers can still move off when it is safe to do so by observing a steady amber light on the traffic signal – this indicates that pedestrians may be crossing the road and you should wait until the green person has disappeared.
The amber lights on puffin crossings can also be set to a beeping sound, although this is normally done on a timer and only operates at certain hours of the day. It is illegal to overtake vehicles when the lights are on a flashing amber or red, because doing so could result in a collision.