|September 19, 2002|
It is correct that all APS do is let the blind traveler know when it is safe to walk. But in my opinion and the opinion of other visually impaired persons, that word "ALL" is very important. In today's world of growing traffic conjestion, more and more complex traffic patterns, and increasingly aggressive motorists, why wouldn't any pedestrian want the widest margin of safety possible.
APS and detectible warnings make decisions about when and where to cross streets easier, more accurate, and safer. I can think of several intersections in my city where this is true. There is one particular pedestrian crossing that I frequently use which occurs in the middle of the block. It is usually safe to make this crossing when there are no traffic sounds during the all quiet period of the traffic cycle. However, before the audible signal was installed at this intersection, I made the mistake of crossing when there were no traffic sounds, but the light was green. Now that the APS is in place I know for sure when the traffic cycle begins, and when it is safe to cross.
Detectible warnings assure the blind traveler of the exact spot where it is safe to cross an intersection. In areas where sidewalks are wide and curbs are blended, , where corners are very gradual and gently rounded, and where sidewalks are frequently intersected by driveways, detectible warnings mark the exact corner or area where it is safe to cross the street. In short APS and detectible warnings help make travel easier and safer for a great many of us without interfering in travel for those among us who choose not to use such environmental aids. Is this not a win win situation? This completely refusible technology can be used by those of us who find it helpful or simply ignored by those who don't.
For more information about all aspects of audible pedestrian signals contact Lucus Franck at The Seeing Eye [...]
Texas Commission f/t Blind
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