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New crosswalk beacon unveiled at College of New Caledonia…

PRINCE GEORGE, BC: A partnership between the City of Prince George, College of New Caledonia (CNC), and Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) is helping to improve pedestrian safety on a busy street.

Students and visitors walking between CNC’s main campus and the John A. Brink Trades and Technology Centre may have noticed a recent addition on their route.

A solar-powered rectangular rapid flashing beacon (RRFB) was installed in December 2022 at the existing 18th Avenue crosswalk connecting the parts of CNC’s campus. The new beacon promises to increase pedestrian visibility to vehicles and improve safety through the use of high-intensity flashing lights.

“RRFBs give drivers ample visual warning that people are about to cross the street and also make it more they will stop for pedestrians,” said Chris Vliegenthart, the City’s supervisor of transportation services.

“The campus’s joint health and safety committee identified this improvement as an important safety step,” said Tara Szerencsi, CNC’s vice-president of finance and corporate services. “We’re grateful for their advocacy, as well as the work of the City of Prince George and ICBC in making this new beacon a reality.”

  • Cleaning the solar panels and beacons;
  • Checking the battery, controller settings, and pedestrian buttons;
  • Performing software updates; and
  • Repairing and replacing components as needed.

In spite of the safety features found in RRFBs, Vliegenthart warned that pedestrian control systems alone do not guarantee a person’s safety.

“Always obey traffic signals and check that traffic has stopped before stepping onto the street,” he said.

The systems were approved in 2014 by the Transportation Association of Canada for inclusion as a traffic control device in their Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices for Canada. The manual helps governments on all levels in Canada “apply traffic control devices in a consistent and harmonized manner”.

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