Nice job at Bucklin & Tracyton, county, but…

The in basket: Paul Ofsthun and Murray Webb like the widening of the intersection at Bucklin Hill and Tracyton Boulevard in Silverdale, but both think it could work better. 

Paul writes, “Although I love the new intersection with it’s new right turn lane and the new flashing yellow turn lights, I wonder why they put in a green right arrow (eastbound Bucklin to southbound Tracyton) but never activated it. 

“It sure would ease congestion if they had the green arrow on when the northbound Tracyton traffic is going. To me It looks like they planned on it but never activated it.”

Murray says, “….Kudoes to those involved….traffic moves much better!  

“However, could you please use your column to educate folks what a flashing yellow arrow allows them to do?  

“I remember reading that many lights in Silverdale will eventually be using them, but indications are that many (drivers) aren’t aware they are allowed to turn after yielding.”

Andy Boeckl makes the same observation about reluctant drivers at all of the yellow flashing lefts Kitsap County is putting in.

The out basket: About the right turn arrow, Doug Bear of Kitsap County Public Works says, “Activating (it) requires special programming, additional in-shop work, and consultation with the equipment supplier. 

 We … plan to activate the light when the process is completed.”

Those flashing yellow left turn lights are working their way north. The county debuted them in South Kitsap a year or so ago and has been retrofitting signals in Silverdale. 

So far, I think the county is the only jurisdiction in this county to use them, but a reader back in the Midwest somewhere who goes by the online name MidiMagic and follows the Road Warrior blog says the federal Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices underwent a major revision late last year and now dictates that flashing yellow left turn signals are  the standard at intersections where left turners are allowed to turn after yielding to oncoming traffic. I’m trying to learn more about that.

The flashing yellows consternate many drivers when they first come upon one. The lights replace the situation where left turners faced a green ball light and a sign requiring them to yield before turning. 

They mean that although oncoming through traffic has a green light, you are free to make your turn if it won’t endanger any oncoming vehicles. They usually follow a green turn arrow that comes up first, and means oncoming through traffic has a red light.

They are growing in popularity because it reduces the amount of time left turners must sit and wait, their cars idling, before turning.





2 thoughts on “Nice job at Bucklin & Tracyton, county, but…

  1. I too like those new yellow left-turn arrows appearing on traffic lights. But please remind drivers to be mindful of us walkers/joggers who are crossing with the “walk” indicators. Since they’ve been installed I’ve had a few close calls, especially the intersection of Ridgetop and Myhre Road.

  2. Hello
    I read your article this morning. I LOVE the yellow left arrows, but have had the opposite problem than you addressed. I have seen reluctant turners, but my problem is when drivers don’t pay attention to who actually has the green. I have noticed this consistently at the intersection of Ridgetop Blvd. and Myhre. I have seen left turners (from Myhre heading up Ridgetop) STOP for the yellow, and then proceed to turn left in front of those given the newly green right-of-way. I have seen several near misses. Usually the left-turner gets through safely. I could have more patience if they were just running the yellow light……..
    maybe a little more flashing- yellow arrow education is in order?

    I agree with Margo above, but from my driver perspective: I find it difficult to watch for pedestrians during the blinking yellow. I’d feel better if when the walk sign is active that the left arrow be red. However, after seeing a close call, I now am more careful to watch for pedestrians than when they first appeared!

    thanks for your column
    Tineke Dahl

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