News

Posted on: February 16, 2017

Blinking Yellow Lights Being Installed on 61st to Ease Traffic Congestion

Traffic signals along 61st Street between Seawall and Broadway are being improved by adding a blinking yellow arrow for left turns. The blinking arrow is meant to signify to motorists that they can legally make a left turn but must yield to oncoming traffic.


In an effort to safely ease congestion along 61st, the lights will operate as blinking yellow arrows only during non-peak hours. Solid green left turn signals will be used during morning and evening periods due to the increased number of vehicles on the roadway. While the “yield” flashing yellow arrow signals are used throughout in the state, these will be the first ones in the City of Galveston.


Initially, the blinking yellow lights will be installed at every intersection along 61st for the left turn lanes to go east and west on the connecting streets, with the exception of Broadway and 61st. The first signal was installed late last week on 61st and Stewart and 61st and T-1/2.


The City will be planning to implement these “yield” flashing yellow arrow signals throughout the City where the existing traffic conditions would benefit. “The Traffic Department will be closely monitoring the performance of these intersections to ensure that the traffic signal enhancements significantly ease congestion as anticipated.” Said the City’s Public Works Director Kyle Hockersmith. “If all goes as planned, we will continue to install these signal enhancements throughout the City to help keep traffic moving as smoothly as possible.”


To view the information video explaining how to use the blinking yellow lights please visit www.galvestontx.gov/blinkingyellowlights p

HELPFUL INFORMATION FROM TXDOT ON WHAT THE ARROWS MEAN

  • Steady red arrow = Stop. No left turns allowed.
  • Steady yellow arrow = Prepare to stop.
  • Flashing yellow arrow = Left turns allowed, but must yield to oncoming traffic.
  • Steady green arrow = Left turns allowed and protected.

Flashing yellow arrow left-turn signals are a new standard for signals where a driver must yield to oncoming traffic to turn left. Research has shown that this new signal is safer, more efficient and a more consistent approach for left-turn lanes.


Flashing yellow arrow signals will be gradually phased in to replace the traditional circular green signals currently used to let drivers know that they must yield on green to turn left.


THE PROBLEM

A left turn can be one of the most challenging actions a driver can undertake. Left turn signals have been designed to let drivers know when they can safely turn across oncoming traffic, but the wide variety to types of signals used across the country can be confusing.


In particular, when drivers are shown a green turn signal, they may not understand that the turn is not protected and that they must yield to oncoming traffic.


THE SOLUTION

Research has shown that the new Flashing Yellow Arrow signals are safer and more easily understood by drivers than the traditional "yield on green" signals.


These new signals provide additional opportunities for a driver to make a safe left turn than traditional signals.

Additional Info...
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