Stamford unveils new traffic signals for visually impaired

Stamford unveiled a new kind of traffic signal today that is supposed to make it safer for the blind to cross the street, but police

The city of Stamford is unveiling a new type of traffic signal that's designed to make it easier for the visually impaired to cross the street.

The city of Stamford is unveiling a new type of traffic signal that's designed to make it easier for the visually impaired to cross the street. (10/14/16)

STAMFORD - The city of Stamford is unveiling a new type of traffic signal that's designed to make it easier for the visually impaired to cross the street but police believe it could lead to more accidents.

They are called HAWK signals. Some visually impaired residents got a tutorial on exactly how these crosswalks work so that they will be able to safely cross Stamford streets. 

The new signals are activated when a button is pushed. The person waiting to cross is then told when to wait and when to cross.

When someone starts crossing, the lights are a solid red, but after a few seconds, they start blinking red. That means drivers have to stop, but if no one's in the crosswalk, they may proceed.

Advocates for the blind say drivers are confused about what to do when encountering this new signal.

“I think it's going to be up to Stamford to get out there and educate the public … and to the Department of Motor Vehicles too,” says Alan Gunzburg, advocate for the blind.

However, Gunzburg says that these new signals will help visually impaired people like himself to go out and do what they want to do on daily basis.

Right now, there are only two crosswalks in Stamford equipped with the HAWK signals. 

More on this topic

Guide to HAWK crosswalks

Guide to HAWK crosswalks

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