Flashing Yellow-Arrow Lights To Go Up At Intersections Statewide

Posted August 2, 2006
Updated November 10, 2006

— RALEIGH, N.C. -- Intersections across the state could soon have flashing yellow-arrow lights to help prevent failure-to-yield accidents.

State transportation department engineers say too many drivers think they have the right-of-way when the traffic signal at intersections switches to a solid green light.

The arrows are supposed to make it clear to drivers that they can pass through an intersection, but must yield to oncoming traffic.

"The flashing yellow arrow, we feel, makes it clear that you can make a left turn, provided you have sufficient gaps in the opposing traffic," said state signal engineer Greg Fuller.

From February 2004 until February 2005, there were 28 wrecks at the intersection of N.C. Highway 64 and the visitor's entrance to WakeMed in Cary caused by people turning into oncoming traffic.

During the next year after the flashing yellow light was installed at the intersection, engineers saw just five failure-to-yield wrecks.

The new lights, which engineers say are cost-effective safety measures, cost about $400 to install.

Only one other intersection in North Carolina has the flashing light -- in Charlotte. Traffic areas in Fuquay-Varina and Fayetteville are potential sites for the next set of arrow lights.


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