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Interpretation Letter 2(09)-86 (I) - Yield Here To (Stop Here For) Pedestrians Signs (R1-5 Series) - Utah DOT

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U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration

1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE.
Washington, D.C. 20590

July 21, 2014

In Reply Refer To: HOTO-1

John L. Leonard, P.E., PTOE
Operations Engineer
Division of Traffic and Safety
Utah Department of Transportation
4501 South 2700 West
P.O. Box 141265
Salt Lake City, UT 84114-1265

Dear Mr. Leonard:

Thank you for your request for an interpretation concerning the use of the Yield Here to Pedestrian Signs and Stop Here for Pedestrian Signs referred to as the R1-5 series signs.

The purpose of the R1-5 series signs is to address the issue that occurs when drivers yield or stop too close to crosswalks that cross uncontrolled multi-lane approaches. This action can place pedestrians at risk by blocking other driversí view of pedestrians and by blocking the pedestrians' view of the vehicles approaching in the adjacent lanes. This is problematic since these are uncontrolled crossings and the drivers in the adjacent lane are not expecting to stop. For this reason, the 2009 Edition of the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices for Streets and Highways (MUTCD) R1-5 associates the use with uncontrolled multi-lane approaches. During the development of these signs, the testing and evaluation of the R1-5 series occurred at multilane midblock crossings and the effectiveness of the R1-5 series signs was not evaluated for single lane or intersection applications.

Your specific questions are addressed in the following paragraphs.

  1. Is an uncontrolled approach to a crosswalk defined as the approach to both mid-block crosswalks and crosswalks across the uncontrolled legs of intersections, regardless of the number of approach lanes? The MUTCD does not provide a definition for an uncontrolled approach to a crosswalk. If the approach to the crosswalk is not controlled by a traffic control device assigning right of way, then the approach would be uncontrolled regardless if the approach is for a mid-block crosswalk or for an approach across an uncontrolled leg of an intersection.
  1. Can R1-5 series signs be used for crosswalks both at mid-block locations and at uncontrolled legs of intersections, regardless of the number of approach lanes? The R1-5 series signs are mandatory for uncontrolled multilane approaches. Please note that with a single lane approach there is no adjacent lane to be affected by another vehicle obscuring the view of either the drivers or pedestrians, so the R1-5 series signs would not be needed.
  1. Can R1-5 series signs be used for a crosswalk on an uncontrolled ramp (ie, a free right turn) at a signalized intersection, regardless of the number of approach lanes? If the approach is a single lane approach whether at a crosswalk on an uncontrolled ramp, the R1-5 sign is not needed.
  1. Can R1-5 series signs be used at any of the above locations without the yield (stop) lines, regardless of the number of approach lanes? Paragraph 4 Section 2B.11 of the MUTCD states that Yield Here To (Stop Here For) Pedestrians signs may be used in advance of a crosswalk that crosses an uncontrolled multi-lane approach to indicate to road users where to yield (stop) even if yield (stop) lines are not used. If the approach is a single lane, the R1-5 series signs are not needed.
  1. If yield (stop) lines are used on a single lane approach to a crosswalk, is the R1-5 series of signs required? If stop or yield lines are used on a single lane approach to a crosswalk, the R1-5 series are not required and are not intended to be used.

It is FHWA's official interpretation that the Yield Here to Pedestrian Signs and Stop Here for Pedestrian Signs (R1-5 series signs) should only be used in advance of a crosswalk that crosses an uncontrolled, midblock, multilane approach.

For recordkeeping purposes, please use the following official interpretation number and title: "2(09)-86 (I) – Yield Here To (Stop Here For) Pedestrians Signs (R1-5 Series) - Utah DOT." Please refer to this number in future correspondence. If you have further questions on this matter, please contact Mr. Eric Ferron of our MUTCD Team at 720-963-3206 or eric.ferron@dot.gov

Sincerely yours,

Original signed by:

Paul Pisano for

Mark R. Kehrli
Director, Office of Transportation Operations