This page includes information on commonly asked safety situations that arise across our City. If you would like to make a suggestion for content please email us at

Pedestrian Safety

The City of Quincy is committed to maintaining the safety of all road users. To increase pedestrian safety, the City has partnered with the Massachusetts Department of Transportation to provide free reflectors for pedestrian use to increase nighttime visibility of walkers. These reflectors can be placed on coats, sneakers, hats, gloves, etc. and will be illuminated by vehicle headlights. Free reflectors can be picked up in the lobby of City Hall, the DPW building at 55 Sea St and various local businesses. 

NHTSA Pedestrian Safety Guidelines

The National Highway Traffic Safety Association, or NHTSA, provides safety guidelines and resources for drivers and pedestrians of all ages. These videos and safety tips provide a good foundation for safer streets for all modes of transportation.  


NHTSA Pedestrian Safety Basic Tips

  1. Be predictable. Follow the rules of the road and obey signs and signals.
  2. Walk on sidewalks whenever they are available.
  3. If there is no sidewalk, walk facing traffic and as far from traffic as possible.
  4. Keep alert at all times; don't be distracted by electronic devices that take your eyes (and ears) off the road.
  5. Whenever possible, cross streets at crosswalks or intersections, where drives expect pedestrians. Look for cars in all directions, including turning left or right. 
  6. If a crosswalk or intersection is not available, locate a well-lit area where you have the best view of traffic. Wait for a gap in traffic that allows enough time to cross safely; continue watching for traffic as you cross.
  7. Never assume a driver sees you. Make eye contact with drivers as they approach to make sure you are seen.
  8. Be visible at all times. Wear bright clothing during the day, and wear reflective materials or use a flashlight at night.
  9. Watch for cars entering or exiting driveways, or backing up in parking lots.
  10. Avoid alcohol and rugs when walking; they impair your abilities and your judgement. 

Rapid Rectangular Flashing Beacons (RRFB)

Rapid Rectangular Flashing Beacon

TPAL has installed Rapid Rectangular Flashing Beacons, or RRFBs, at a number of locations throughout the city. These products provide an effective solution to aid pedestrians in crossing streets with higher volumes or speeds at mid block locations, or where vehicle compliance is found to be low. 

Many of the RRFB systems installed are solar powered, making them easier to install than typical AC powered signals, which require trenching across streets and power provided from a utility pole. The solar installations are cost effective in both their installation and operation, and the push button activated flashing lights provide higher compliance from vehicles to make formerly uncomfortable crossings safer. 

Below is a map of RRFB locations across the City.



Hawk Signals

HAWK - High Intensity Activated Crosswalks are in use in three locations in Quincy. Two of them are located in Quincy Center adjacent to Hancock Adams Common. The other is located on Hancock Street in North Quincy near Myrtle Street. For a datasheet from the Federal Highway Association showing the safety benefits of a HAWK signal, please click here

The video below describes proper use of the HAWK signal by both pedestrians and drivers.  It is from the University of Missouri, and it accurately demonstrates what all road users are required to do at these signals.



What Is Quincy Doing To Make Streets Safer?

TPAL is constantly working to make Quincy's streets and sidewalks safer for all those who live, work and play here. Some of the many efforts undertaken by TPAL to increase safety include: 

  • Maintenance of existing crosswalks markings, signage and other pavement markings to increase pedestrian visibility and awareness.
  • Upgrading crosswalk markings to new epoxy product, which provides increased visibility and durability over paint markings. This helps us ensure that pavement markings last longer and retain their reflective properties for nighttime walkers.
  • Maintenance of existing signalized intersections to ensure crossings function as designed.
  • Upgrades of handicap accessible ramps at intersections to better accommodate all users.
  • Installation of new ADA accepted APS "smart" crossing buttons with audible and tactile cues at many locations across the City. 
  • Installation of new 16" crossing indicators with countdowns to make crossing easier and safer for all residents.
  • Installation of Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon (RRFB) crossing systems at many warranted locations to assist pedestrians crossing streets with high vehicle volumes mid-block. 
  • Installation of speed feedback signs, which have proved effective in lowering vehicle speeds and improving driver awareness. 
  • Partnering with MassDOT and other stakeholders to raise pedestrian safety awareness through education campaigns and free pedestrian safety product distribution. 
  • Constant evaluation of our roads and sidewalks with an eye towards installing new crossings and upgrading signalization where warranted. 

What Can I Do To Help?

Is there a pedestrian upgrade you'd like to see? Is there a safety concern you'd like assessed? Please contact City of Quincy TPAL at 617-376-1478 or here.