Tag Archives: stop bar

What triggers a red light camera infraction

The in basket: Dan Calnan read the recent Road Warrior column about a woman ticketed at one of Bremerton’s red light camera intersections after she followed a bus through a right turn and discovered the light had turned red just before her turn, which she hadn’t been able to see because the bus blocked her view.

Dan asked if she got the ticket for entering the intersection on red, not clearing the intersection while the light was red, or for blocking the intersection while the light was red.
The out basket: Lt. Pete Fisher of Bremerton police said the light has to be red prior to the vehicle crossing the broad white stop bar in entering the intersection for a ticket to be issued. That’s true of any traffic signal, right turn or otherwise.

I think staying in an intersection after the light is red and blocking cross traffic from proceeding is illegal, but the woman who got the ticket hadn’t done that, the red light cameras won’t support a ticket for that, and it wasn’t what Dan wanted to know, anyway.

Mystery message on stop bar punished

The in basket: Dave of Port Orchard sent me a photo of the white stop bar on Van Skiver Road at Bethel Road in South Kitsap that show some odd writing.

“Can you tell me what the county was doing here?” he asked. “I’m disgusted by this if it was done by a county crew.  It’s burned into the stop line.”

The out basket: It looked like vandalism to me, but it turns out it was done by a county crew – to the regret of those who did it.

Doug Bear of Kitsap County Public Works said, “The majority of our traffic marking is done by summer help crews under the lead of one of our sign technicians. This provides cost-savings for the county, and expands our ability to make sure pavement markings are visible and effective.

“In this instance an ill-conceived idea was coupled with a bad judgment call by the lead worker resulting in the marking your reader reported.

“We take pavement marking very seriously, and recognize the importance of proper procedures to mark pavement. This action is unacceptable, and those involved are being disciplined accordingly. We have fixed the marking and will ensure that this type of activity does not happen again.”

If there is some meaning or message in the odd letters, they go over my head.

Doug says he’s in the same boat. “I don’t know what the intention was or the meaning of the message,” he said.

Driver worries about Phillips Road stop bars

The in basket: Lorrie Kalmbach-Ehlers writes to say, “I cross Sedgwick Road on Phillips Road in (South Kitsap) daily and can’t understand why they marked the stop lines so far back on Phillips Road.

“Coming south to north, there is no way to see eastbound traffic sufficiently on Sedgwick unless you are in an F350 or

something as tall,” she said. “Crossing north to south, the bank to the left is so high you can’t see

around it to safely observe east to west traffic on

Sedgwick without almost putting yourself into that same mentioned traffic.  It’s very unsafe and

daily makes me wonder when someone is going to get

killed there.”

The out basket: I discovered when I checked Lorrie’s complaint that the stop bars on Phillips are farther back than almost all others on Sedgwick, and that there is a wide variation in where stop bars on Sedgwick’s crossroads are, relative to their stop signs.

But I also had to tell her that it shouldn’t be a problem, as there is enough room in front of the stop bars for a driver to edge ahead until she or he can see approaching traffic on Sedgwick.

State law requires a stop at the stop bar, but there is nothing to prevent a driver from stopping again when far enough forward to see better.

In actuality, I think I must ignore the stop bars except at traffic signals, as that is where the in-pavement vehicle detectors will detect me. Elsewhere, I just stop where I have the best view of oncoming vehicles without having the nose of my car in their way.

Brenden Clarke was the project engineer on the recent Sedgwick safety project that revised the Phillips Road intersection. Brenden has moved on, but his successor, Jeff Cook, explains why the bars are where they are.

He said their locations are to prevent interference with vehicles coming from the left-turn pockets on Sedgwick. “The models used for the turning movements include SUVs and school buses,” he added.

Of course, drivers like me who edge forward to improve their view of on-coming traffic will be in the way of those turners anyway, but at least the stop bars seek to minimize that conflict.