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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation
FHWA Highway Safety Programs

Improving Pedestrian Treatments at Unsignalized Crossings


This tool helps users select engineering treatments to improve safety for pedestrians crossing high-volume, high-speed roadways at unsignalized intersections and midblock crossing locations, and to understand recommended modifications to the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices for Streets and Highways (MUTCD) pedestrian traffic signal warrant. The guide contains quantitative procedures for using pedestrian volume, crossing width, traffic volume, and other variables to recommend one of four traffic control treatment categories:

  • Marked crosswalk.
  • Enhanced, high-visibility, or "active when present" traffic control device.
  • Red signal or beacon device.
  • Conventional traffic signal system.

Data to support this guidance and analysis can be collected using field data collection tools and recommendations within the guide. Examples and pictures are included to demonstrate traffic control devices in each treatment category, which, combined with supporting information, are intended to guide countermeasure selection and policy development. Effectiveness of various treatments is presented in terms of motorist compliance.

Recommended revisions for the MUTCD pedestrian signal warrant (prior to the time of publishing) are also provided.

Tool Type:
Informational Guide
Owner Source:
  • Transportation Research Board (TRB), National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP), Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP)

The guide is available free of charge at the following link: Improving Pedestrian Safety at Unsignalized Crossings.


This information is disseminated under the sponsorship of the U.S. Department of Transportation in the interest of information exchange. The U.S. Government assumes no liability for the use of the information contained herein. This information does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. The U.S. Government does not endorse products or manufacturers. Trademarks or manufacturer's names appear in this information only because they are considered essential to the objective of this publication.

Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations, and translations thereof, expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Federal Highway Administration.