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HAWK Signals

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High Intensity Activated Crosswalk (HAWK) Signals

A High Intensity Activated Crosswalk Signal, also known as a HAWK Signal, is operational on Menomonie Street.  The HAWK Signal was installed at the crossing of the multi-use trail on Menomonie Street to assist pedestrians crossing the roadway. While the signal has a different appearance to drivers (two red lenses above a yellow lens), the pedestrian signal works the same as at a signalized intersection.  When a pedestrian activates the system by pressing a push button, the overhead flashing yellow lights alert motoring traffic that a pedestrian has activated the signal. The light then turns to a solid yellow which indicates the signal will be turning red and traffic must stop.  The signal then stays solid red while the pedestrians are given a "walk" signal.  During this time all traffic must stay stopped.  A flashing red light appears when the pedestrian countdown starts, telling the driver that if the intersection is clear, he or she may proceed through the crossing with caution.  If approaching the pedestrian crossing when lights are flashing red, the motorist must come to a complete stop prior to proceeding through the crossing.  When the pedestrian countdown time has expired, the beacon goes dark and traffic continues on Menomonie Street as usual.  The following link shows how a HAWK Signal operates visually for the pedestrian and motorist: Click here.

The Federal Highway Administration has supporting data of HAWK systems in a July 2010 report,  Additionally, a video example of an operating HAWK system can be found at

The HAWK Signal was included in the Menomonie Street Capital Improvement Project this year.

If you have any questions regarding the HAWK Signal or any traffic control device, please contact the Transportation Engineer at 715-839-4934.