Vision and hearing-impaired citizens living in Cape Town may find it easier to cross the roads after a decision by the city council to install a special pedestrian button at traffic lights.

Developed in Australia, the so-called audio-tactile pedestrian detector (ATPD) consists of a vibrating button that also emits an audio signal when it is safe to cross. The volume of the signal increases automatically with increasing ambient noise so it can always be heard above the traffic.

The first system has been installed on Durham Road, Salt River, outside the head office of the Association for the Blind. Other devices will be introduced at intersections around the new football stadium in Green Point, which is under construction for next year