Pedestrian Safety Guide and Countermeasure Selection System


Case Study No. 101

Signs and Signals

Miami-Dade County, Florida

Prepared by Ann McGrane, University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center.

Pedestrian countdown signals show how much time is left to safely cross the roadway.


Miami-Dade County had the highest incidence of pedestrian injuries and fatalities in the State of Florida.


In 2000, Miami-Dade County, Florida had a population of 2.25 million people, and the county comprised about 14 percent of Florida's total population. The State of Florida has one of the highest rates of pedestrian crashes in the nation, and Miami-Dade County has the highest incidence of pedestrian crashes in Florida. Because of these statistics, Miami-Dade County has made a concerted effort to improve pedestrian safety.

SR A1A Sunny Isles: Meridian Barrier.


To improve pedestrian safety, Miami-Dade County participated in a FHWA-sponsored study to install and evaluate countermeasures at locations of high pedestrian crash risk. A combination of countermeasures was installed from an overall selection of 15 countermeasures. The countermeasures included interventions such as pedestrian push buttons that confirm when someone has pressed them, leading pedestrian intervals (LPIs), in-street yield signs, rectangular rapid flash beacons (RRFBs), pedestrian countdown signals, and a reduction in the minimum green light time for traffic signals.

NE 10th Street at N Miami Beach Blvd: Refuge Island.


Miami-Dade County spent a little over 1 million dollars on the new countermeasures and found significant improvements in pedestrian safety. Push buttons that confirm when someone has pressed them increased the percentage of pedestrians who waited for the WALK signal from 51.2 percent to 72.5 percent at one site and from 72.3 percent to 86.0 percent at another site. Pedestrian countdown signals were found to increase the percentage of pedestrians who actually pressed the call button. LPIs increased yielding by drivers turning left, and in-street yield signs increased driver yielding from 19 percent to 71 percent. However, in-street yield signs were easily damaged.

In-street yield signs dramatically improved driver yielding at crosswalks.

One of the dramatic changes in driver yielding was attributed to RRFBs. At one site, driver yielding changed from 0 percent to 65 percent. At another site, it changed from 1 percent to 92 percent. Reducing the minimum green light time increased pedestrian compliance of the pedestrian signal from 64 percent to 98 percent. However, this change caused additional motor vehicle delay. This project also led to a dramatic reduction in pedestrian-vehicle crashes. In the 2 years following installation of the countermeasures, the number of crashes per year decreased by 50 percent to 51 pedestrian crashes per year. Overall, the combination of countermeasures led to significant improvements in pedestrian and driver compliance, leading to a safer pedestrian environment.


Miami-Dade Pedestrian Safety Project: Phase II. Final Implementation Report and Executive Summary.2008.

Redmon, T. Evaluating Pedestrian Safety Countermeasures. Public Roads, Vol. 74, No. 5, 2011.