Post Number: 13
|Posted on Friday, June 21, 2013 - 10:49 pm: |
Just curious why the emergency traffic light in front of Fire Station #6 continually blinks yellow? When the signal is activated for real and turns solid yellow before red I would think there are probably going to be several people continue to run through the yellow light because they are so use to doing that on a daily basis. Seems like it would make more sense to keep it on green until it is activated for the engines to exit. That way when it turned yellow people would be more inclined to stop and not run the yellow light.
Todd Renshaw, Director of Public Safety
Post Number: 508
|Posted on Friday, June 28, 2013 - 06:47 am: |
We will ask Traffic Engineering to review your suggestion.
Joel Fitts, Senior Traffic Engineer
Post Number: 144
|Posted on Friday, June 28, 2013 - 08:43 am: |
The signal can run either way and be compliant with the Texas Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices. We arrived at our decision based on several different factors. Our first emergency signal was installed at Central Fire Station which is located near the signalized intersection of Main and Gary Burns. We wanted to use the flashing yellow there because we wanted to eliminate the confusion of two closely spaced green indications. When the engine leaves that station, the first signal goes to red while the second signal remains green in case the engines need to travel east. We asked ourselves, would drivers know which green indication changed if they both operated in a similar fashion? Second, the flashing yellow operation indicates "caution" and we believe that this type of signal/intersection has things occur that arenít normal in terms of what one expects at a traffic signal. We also checked with some other agencies to see what they were doing and many said they were using the flashing yellow option or had plans to change their locations with green operations to a flashing yellow operation. Lastly, we knew that a similar system was going to be needed near future Fire Station #8 which will be located close to the traffic signal at Independence and Rolater and therefore shouldn't use two sets of green indications. Given those factors and our desire to keep the operation of emergency signals consistent across the city, Fire Station #6 uses the flashing yellow signal.
Regarding your question about someone running the yellow light: Like all other traffic signals, this location will turn red and stay red in all directions for a bit before turning the other direction green. This allows someone to clear the area if they cross the stop bar right before the signal turns red. The engine/medic drivers are also looking to make sure the way is clear before entering.
Assistant Director of Engineering