FAIRHOPE, Ala. (WPMI) New traffic lights featuring a yellow flashing arrow are going up across Alabama. It's a moved aimed at cutting down on driver mistakes.
The Alabama Department of Transportation began installing the lights in Baldwin County Tuesday. It's expected to take several weeks. A flashing yellow arrow is more easily understood when it comes to yielding to oncoming traffic before you turn left, that's the theory.
"The sequence you will see is a green arrow followed by a yellow solid arrow, then a read arrow, after the red arrow that's when you see the yellow flashing arrow which means you can turn left when the traffic is clear," said Kathryn Hamlett with ALDOT.
"I got a postcard in the mail a week ago and I read it and it was cool, whatever. I follow the traffic laws. It's no big deal. Whatever they want me to do, turn here turn there whatever. Just let me figure out the rules and I'm alright," said motorist Lucas brown of Fairhope.
"And what engineers have found is that if people see the flashing yellow arrow and they don't know what it means they are still more likely to make a safe maneuver like stop or yield to oncoming traffic," said Hamlett.
ALDOT Tuesday focused on installing the lights at the intersection of Highway 98 and Middle Avenue in Fairhope. The total cost for the lights? $300,000, that covers Fairhope to Spanish Fort. It's money the state has to spend to meet new federal highway standards.
State and federal engineers say its about safety. Drivers are also hoping it'll move traffic.
"I mean it should change a little faster because the light does take a little while. So other than that it would be a lot better," said Charles Daughtry.
Huntsville has as few of the lights. Baldwin's U.S. 98 gets the state's entire budget for the flashing yellow signals this year. All 17 will be done by the end of the month.