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INTRODUCTION

Street Crossing Techniques

Introduction

This review guide is a supplement to the Step-By-Step series on orientation & mobility. Designed for use by students who are preparing to become O&M specialists, this review guide provides a quick, sequential, and pictorial review of the mobility skills taught in the module, Street Crossing Techniques. Whether used to prepare for a test, or to provide a quick refresher when preparing to teach a new or forgotten skill, it is hoped that this review guide will be of value to the user.

This review guide is provided in a durable, hard-copy format to enable individuals to use it out on the street or when working with students. This guide is also provided in electronic format. For more detailed information about the mobility skills, please see the Step-By-Step Study Guide or the Step-By-Step videos on flash drive.

APPROACH

Approach

Standard

Using the TOUCH technique or the TOUCH & SLIDE technique, the traveler approaches the corner.

When the cane tip drops off the curb, the traveler maintains her current alignment and anchors the cane at midline against the curb. She walks up to her cane.

The traveler “clears” the area of the street where she will take her first step.

The traveler stands erect with her head, trunk and feet facing forward; she evenly distributes her weight on the balls of her feet.

The traveler holds her cane in the semi-vertical position, with her cane anchored at the curb.

Curb Ramps and Blended Curbs

The traveler approaches the corner, using either the TOUCH & SLIDE or the TOUCH (Constant Contact) technique when she either detects the curb ramp or feels that she is nearing a corner with a blended curb.

When she detects the street edge of the ramp or blended curb, the traveler anchors her cane on the edge, at midline, and walks up to her cane.

The traveler “clears” the area of the street immediately beyond the edge of the ramp or blended curb where she will take her first step.

The traveler establishes her alignment using traffic sounds; she does not align with the edge of the ramp or blended curb.

The traveler holds her cane in the semi-vertical position, with her cane still anchored on the edge, while she determines when it is safe to cross.

Obstacle at the Corner

Upon contacting an obstacle or hazard, the traveler takes 1-2 steps to the side using the TOUCH & DRAG technique, realigns, and “clears” again.

Making Multiple Crossings at an Approach

After crossing the first street, the traveler takes three steps forward, and then turns toward the parallel street.

The traveler walks up to the corner, then “clears” and aligns.

Crossing Perpendicular to the Line of Travel

Upon contacting the curb of the perpendicular street, the traveler turns 180 degrees and takes three steps.

The traveler turns toward the parallel street. She walks up to the corner, then “clears” and aligns.

Determining Curb Contact Mid-Block or at the Corner

The traveler stops walking when her cane tip falls off the edge of the curb at her side.

While listening for parallel traffic, the traveler slides her cane tip along the curb edge to determine the curb’s direction.

If mid-block, the traveler adjusts her alignment parallel to the curb and/or traffic, then continues travel.

ALIGNMENT

Alignment With Parallel Traffic

The traveler aligns her body parallel to the nearest straight-traveling parallel traffic.

Alignment With Perpendicular Traffic

The traveler aligns her body perpendicular to the nearest straight-traveling perpendicular traffic.

Skewed Intersections

The traveler walks up to the corner and “clears.”

The traveler aligns her body parallel to the nearest straight-traveling parallel traffic.

The traveler holds her cane in the semi-vertical position with her cane anchored on the edge of the curb and maintains her alignment while she determines when it is safe to cross.

TIMING

Unsignalized Intersections

In the total absence of traffic, the traveler crosses when she is ready.

To cross with traffic (when the perpendicular street has a stop sign or other control), the traveler begins crossing as the nearest straight-traveling traffic on the parallel street enters the intersection.

Signalized Intersections

The traveler begins crossing at the beginning of the walk interval and when she hears the surge of idling parallel traffic in the near lane(s) (if available), moves straight ahead.

EXECUTING

Mechanics

When safe, the traveler steps off the curb “in-step” with her cane.

Walking at a normal speed (or slightly faster), the traveler crosses the street.

When the traveler’s cane tip contacts the curb on the opposite side of the street, she anchors her cane and walks up to it.

The traveler “clears” the sidewalk ahead of her and then steps up.

Street Crossing Recovery

Veer Away From The Parallel Street

When the traveler contacts the up-curb but fails to detect the sidewalk above it, she should reach her cane to each side at sidewalk level to locate the sidewalk.

If she does not locate the sidewalk

- The traveler turns toward the corner and then locates the sidewalk using the THREE-POINT technique.

She then “clears” and steps up onto the sidewalk.

Alternatively, the traveler can step up onto the curb immediately and either

- cross over the parkway to the sidewalk while using the UPPER HAND & FOREARM (Modified) technique; or

- turn and follow the curb to the sidewalk using the TOUCH & DRAG technique.

Veer into the Parallel Street

If the traveler passes the opposite corner, she turns and walks toward the nearest curb.

The traveler then locates the sidewalk by following the same procedure as in “Following a Veer into the Perpendicular Street.”

Vehicles in the Crosswalk

Using the VEHICLES IN THE TRAVEL PATH technique, the traveler walks around the front of the vehicle.

If the vehicle totally blocks the crosswalk

The traveler trails around the front of the vehicle to a point that is opposite where she initially contacted the vehicle. She then projects and follows a line of travel to the opposite curb.

If the vehicle only partially blocks the crosswalk

The traveler trails around the front of it and then projects and follows a line of travel from the vehicle’s front corner to the opposite curb.

Median Strips

The traveler’s cane contacts the median strip. The traveler anchors her cane, clears, and steps onto the median strip.

The traveler moves toward the intersection end of the median strip, stopping just before the curb becomes rounded.

The traveler aligns with traffic and crosses at the beginning of the next Walk interval.

SIGNALING DRIVERS

Alerting Drivers: Extra Arc

When the traveler is ready to cross the street,

she swings her cane in a full arc to one side, and

then to the other side.

The traveler steps off the curb “in-step” with the third arc and begins crossing the street.

Traveler Is Not Ready to Cross

The traveler steps back with one foot and waits for the vehicle to move on, or she can bring her cane to a vertical position near her body.

1839 Frankfort Avenue P.O. Box 6085 
Louisville, Kentucky 40206-0085 
Phone: 502-895-2405 
Toll Free: 800-223-1839 
Fax: 502-899-2274 
Email: info@aph.org 
Website: www.aph.org

Step-By-Step 
Review Guide 
Street Crossing Techniques
 
Catalog Number 
8-75980-00

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