Pedestrian sensors stop spread

Vic Department of Transport

The Department of Transport is trialling touchless pedestrian crossing sensors as part of its efforts to make the transport network as contactless as possible.

Trials are underway in Melbourne’s CBD outside the Royal Melbourne Hospital at Grattan Street and Flemington Road, and on McArthur Street at Parliament House.

Touchless pedestrian crossing sensors are also located in Bendigo, Ocean Grove, Trafalgar and the Kingston Council area.

The sensor looks similar to a normal push button, but instead of pressing it, pedestrians wave their hand across the front of the touchless device, triggering the pedestrian crossing.

An illuminated ring changes from red to green to reassure pedestrians that their request has been actioned.

First installed by the Department of Transport in June 2020, the touchless sensor retains all the functionality of a traditional push button, including audio tactile features for the hearing and vision impaired.

“The opportunity to have touchless pedestrian detectors enables a reduction in surface-to-surface disease transmission,” said Brett Langley, DoT’s Network Operations Chief.

“The trials are to test the mechanical reliability of the device and how pedestrians interact with it,” Mr Langley said.

The trial will continue as foot traffic increases following the lifting of pandemic restrictions.

If the trial is successful, roll-out options will be considered in 2022.

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