So, I read this article by James May, which in and of itself isn’t very interesting. I knew about Zebra crossings, but not Pelican crossings. This lead me to this wikipedia article that includes the following paragraph, which was so funny that I thought it was clever wikipedia vandalism at first:

The pelican crossing was the first definitive light controlled crossing in the UK, introduced in 1969, after the earlier failed experiment of the panda crossing. Previously only zebra crossings had been used, which have warning signals (Belisha beacons), but no control signals. The pedestrian lights are situated on the far side of the road to the pedestrian. A puffin crossing has the lights on the same side as the pedestrian; a toucan crossing is a crossing for pedestrians and bicycles; a pegasus crossing allows horse-riders to cross as well. A HAWK beacon, used experimentally in the USA with a standard pedestrian crossing signal, stops traffic when a pedestrian pushes a button to cross, but goes dark unless activated.

There are, in fact, the following possibilities for crossings:

Panda crossing · Pedestrian scramble · Pegasus crossing · Pelican crossing · Puffin crossing · Tiger crossing · Toucan crossing · Zebra crossing

Seriously? How does the UK actually function?

One response to “Pelican Crossings”

  1. Jonah Avatar

    I’ve often wondered the same thing when I’ve hit the cross walk button but then can scurry across without its help. Then some driver has to stop for no apparent reason.

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