Pedestrian Safety Guide and Countermeasure Selection System

 

Advance stop lines and yield markings improve the visibility of pedestrians to motorists and prevent multiple-threat crashes.


Source: Toole Design Group The advance stop or yield line should be supplemented with "Stop Here For Pedestrians" signs (R1-5 or R1-5a) to alert drivers where to stop to let a pedestrian cross.
Source: Toole Design Group

 

Source: Toole Design Group Advance yield markings.
Source: Toole Design Group

 

 

Advance Yield/Stop Lines

An advance stop or yield line placed 20 to 50 feet ahead of the crosswalk can greatly reduce the likelihood of a multiple-threat crash at unsignalized midblock crossings, as the line encourages drivers to stop back far enough so a pedestrian can see if a second motor vehicle is not stopping and be able to take evasive action. A setback of 30 feet for the line has been found to be a good distance for most purposes. Also, parking should be restricted between the stop or yield line and the crosswalk8 to allow for better visibility.

The advance stop or yield line should be supplemented with "Stop Here For Pedestrians" signs (R1-5 or R1-5a) to alert drivers where to stop to let a pedestrian cross. One study found that use of a "sign alone reduced conflicts between drivers and pedestrians by 67 percent, and with the addition of an advanced stop or yield line, this type of conflict was reduced by 90 percent compared to baseline levels.”2 The decision to use an advance stop or yield line depends on state law. Most states require drivers to yield to pedestrians; about a dozen states require drivers to stop for pedestrians.

Studies have found that advance yield markings at midblock crossings can be particularly useful when combined with signs and beacons, such as the Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon or rectangular rapid flash beacon (RRFB).

Purpose

In some cases, yielding motorists can cause unsafe pedestrian crossings by blocking the view of the pedestrian attempting to cross the roadway. The multiple threat crash occurs at crosswalks on multilane roadways. This crash type occurs when a driver stops too close to the crosswalk and lets a pedestrian cross, masking visibility of the adjacent travel lane. A motorist proceeding in the adjacent lane doesn't notice the first car has stopped to let a pedestrian cross, and the pedestrian continues to cross without seeing the other car coming. This situation can result in a high-speed crash, which usually leads to fatalities or very severe injuries.9

Advance stop lines and yield markings improve the visibility of pedestrians to motorists and prevent multiple-threat crashes.

Considerations

• Effectiveness depends on motorist compliance with the marked stop line.
• If placed too far in advance of the crosswalk, motorists might ignore the line.

Estimated Cost

When installed as part of new paving or during repaving projects, the cost to install lines is approximately $200 to $800 per intersection. Otherwise the cost is approximately $1000 to $2000. Adding signage will cost approximately $200 each. See sections on the Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon and RRFB for these costs.

Safety Effects

A summary of studies that have looked at the safety effects of advance yield or stop lines can be found here.

Case Studies

Las Vegas, Nevada
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Tampa, Florida
San Francisco, California