by Melyssa Prince, ABC, Marketing Director for SA-SO Signs & Safety
Even though many cities have enacted laws that forbid using mobile devices while driving, many drivers continue to do so. Coupled with traditional driving distractions such as eating, changing the radio station, and applying make-up; drivers are more distracted today than ever before. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, at any given time, 11 percent of drivers are talking on a cell phone. These factors make public road travel dangerous for drivers as well as pedestrians. The United States Department of Transportation reports that cell phones are involved in 1.6 million automobile accidents each year that result in the deaths of thousands of people (Source: http://www.dontextdrive.com/statistics).
To help redirect attention to the roads, solar-powered flashing traffic devices are becoming more prevalent in our increasingly distracted society. These flashing lights are attention getting and don’t require electricity from the electrical grid.
The Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon, manufactured by SA-SO signs & safety, is one such device that helps with a myriad of traffic challenges including: crowd and traffic control, driver alertness, and personnel management.
Crowd and Traffic Control
The flashing beacon creates a place for pedestrians to walk. The device signals to pedestrians that there is a safe place to cross the street thus reducing jaywalking offenses. Additionally, by creating a consolidated area (or areas) for pedestrians to cross, it makes it easier for drivers to know where to reduce speed and pay closer attention. Portable beacon units can be used in areas where there is temporary construction or temporary traffic then easily removed.
The flashing light mechanism grabs the attention of drivers and often serves as a warning for drivers to take notice of potential pedestrians crossing the street.
The flashing beacon often reduces the need for crossing guards and other crowd control personnel during slower traffic periods. It allows the pedestrian to activate the device to alert drivers and then cross the street more safely. During times of heavier traffic, crossing guards can use the device with a key fob to assist pedestrians in crossing the street.
SA-SO’s Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon (aka RRFB) is solar powered and comes with a weather resistant enclosure. There are multiple activation options available. The programmable timer option allows for the lights to flash at busier times. For example, this feature can be activated when church is in session or when students are travelling to and from school. Triggering the device during certain times makes it more attention getting than a persistent flashing light. The wireless key fob can activate a unit up to 900 feet away.