Caltrain tweaks Clipper pads to aid visually impaired

Caltrain stations will soon feature new devices to help passengers with visual impairments locate Clipper card readers, according to transportation officials.

The Clipper card readers already emit a tone when passengers press the payment cards onto the sensor pads. Starting Sept. 30, the new devices will emit lower-frequency tones at regular intervals so that people who are either blind or whose eyesight is seriously impaired can locate the reader machines more easily.

The locator tone will sound every 15 seconds throughout the day at most Caltrain stations, however at some stations between San Jose and Gilroy, the tone will only sound during weekday morning and evening commutes, according to Caltrain.

At the Broadway and Atherton stations, the tone will only sound during the weekends, as those stations have no weekday service.

The devices are designed to emit a tone that can be heard up to 20 feet away.