Norway gets new solar-powered pedestrian signals

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NORWAY — The downtown area will soon have solar-powered pedestrian crosswalk lights in two areas.

Town Manager David Holt said the units are being installed at the intersection of Cottage and Main streets and Paris and Main streets by the Rowe Elementary School.

The Department of Transportation provided Norway with the solar-powered pedestrian crossing safety devices for free.

“Fire Chief Dennis Yates is assembling ours and is in hope of having at least one functional by Halloween,” Holt said.

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On Halloween, more than 2,000 children and adults are expected to be downtown for the annual Halloween Festival.

Yates, an electrician, said the sites were selected because of heavy pedestrian and vehicular traffic in those areas.

According to information from the DOT, the Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons are solar-powered flashing lights that they claim drastically improve motor vehicle-compliance rates of stopping for pedestrians in crosswalks at unsignalized locations.

The idea was suggested to Holt by Brendan Schauffler, active community environments coordinator for Healthy Oxford Hills, after he saw information about the free offering.

According to information from the DOT, the RRFB is a rectangular-shaped, high-intensity signal head, which flashes in a wig-wag, rapidly flickering pattern. The alternating signals provide direct, ultra-bright concentration, as well as wide-angle intensity. The beacons are pedestrian activated, either via push button or passive detection.

Norway will have a push-button system, Yates said.

ldixon@sunjournal.com

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