Are pedestrian signals a guarantee of safety?

In short, not exactly. While pedestrian signals are installed to improve visibility, aid pedestrians, and improve safety overall, the signals do not take the place of personal responsibility. Pedestrians must exercise good judgment and remain alert when crossing any roadway.

Pedestrians should keep the following points in mind when considering the safety:

  • Push the pedestrian signal button if one is present
    • Note that pushing the button midway through a signal cycle will NOT extend the signal period
  • Do not wait too long after given the notification that it is safe to walk--doing so may not allow ample time for you to clear the intersection. When you receive the indication that it is safe to walk, pause for a moment to look both ways to ensure the intersection is clear, then proceed to cross expediently. 
  • Watch for any potential vehicular traffic crossing your path--by law, vehicles must yield to pedestrians that are walking lawfully within an intersection, but pedestrians must be responsible for their own safety before crossing.
  • Always cross roadways as quickly and safely as possible. 

Show All Answers

1. When did South Carolina begin using the flashing yellow turn arrow?
2. Why did the SC-DOT change and begin using the flashing yellow turn arrow?
3. How is the flashing yellow turn arrow better than a left turn signal?
4. Are pedestrian signals a guarantee of safety?
5. Will more stop signs slow traffic on our street?
6. How safe are pedestrian crosswalks?