New NK light leaves early morning commuter waiting

The in basket: Mark Roden writes that “leaving Indianola at 4:15 a.m. for the past two weeks I have been held up at the new stop light at the fish hatchery for what seems an eternity. The light at that time of the morning will not change. This morning, for example, I waited two minutes (I timed it) before running the red light. I then continued to watch in the rearview mirror until the … light was out of sight and it never changed.


The in basket: Mark Roden writes that “leaving Indianola at 4:15 a.m. for the past two weeks I have been held up at the new stop light at the fish hatchery for what seems an eternity. The light at that time of the morning will not change. This morning, for example, I waited two minutes (I timed it) before running the red light. I then continued to watch in the rearview mirror until the … light was out of sight and it never changed.
“First, I don’t believe the light is working properly and second, is the technology advanced enough to make it a “blinker” that time of morning?” he asked.
The out basket: Jeff Shea of the Kitsap County Public Works traffic engineers says a county technician was working on the problem Mark describes. It may be fixed by now.
“Technology does exist to make lights a blinking red at times,” Jeff adds. “This is a good solution when the speed limits are low (i.e. downtown Bremerton at night). On rural roads with higher speed limits four-way blinking reds are less effective, and tend to frustrate motorists. When working properly the signalized intersection is the preferred way to keep traffic flowing.”
I asked about a signal that blinks yellow for the main line and red for the side road, and the answer was “No, that actually complicates matters. Many motorists at the red light assume all ways have red lights, creating confusion.”
Worse than confusion, I would think, if the driver with the red blinking light assumes the cross traffic will stop and pulls out into its path.
“Motorists should also ensure that they stop at the stop bar,” Jeff added. “The detection is set up there and if they creep ahead of that they will miss the detection.” As always when motorists encounter malfunctioning signals or other road concerns they should report it to The Open Line (360) 337-5777, he said.

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