Abstract At signalized crosswalks, pedestrian clearance time is a key design parameter for ensuring safe pedestrian crossing. It is generally defined as the time required by pedestrians who enter crosswalks at the end of the green indication to complete crossing before conflicting vehicular traffic movements are released. In Japan, pedestrian green indications are followed by pedestrian flashing green (PFG) indications during which time pedestrians are not allowed to start crossing and those in the crosswalk have to finish crossing to either side of the crosswalk; as such, some pedestrians are expected to return to the side they came from. Therefore, PFG intervals are designed to be shorter than the necessary clearance time. Instead, relatively longer red buffer intervals (BI) are provided between the end of the PFG and the succeeding vehicle green indication. This study clarifies the differences between signal setting concepts in various countries and analyses pedestrian clearing behaviors under the Japanese signal control system. Empirical analyses show that the current PFG and BI settings in Japan are shorter than the necessary clearance time and the settings in the US and Germany. As a result, most observed pedestrians who started crossing after the onset of PFG cannot finish crossing before its end and cannot even finish before the succeeding vehicle green indication.