Too new, too soon? KLTV looks into flashing yellow-arrow switch - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Too new, too soon? KLTV looks into flashing yellow-arrow switch

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - The City of Tyler asked for permission to start using the flashing yellow arrow signals before they were officially adopted by the Federal Government. But, was it worth it?

The City of Tyler was the third city in the state to use them, and they're one of about 60 cities across the United States that are now using these flashing yellow arrow light signals. But, if you think that the problems are just here, think again.

Do you know what to do if you're waiting to turn left, and you see a flashing yellow arrow turn signal?

We found a public service announcement on YouTube by The State of Michigan, walking drivers through what to do.

"I don't know how you would do, more... Either you understand it...or you don't...

Pebble Davis has her own opinion about them here in Tyler, "I hate them dang things."

"I do better because I'm younger, but I can see where elderly people would be confused and people from out of town would be confused," says Davis.

City of Tyler traffic engineer Peter Eng says when Tyler's flashing yellow first went up, the city tried to get the word out, and included the warning signs at every flashing yellow intersection even though they're not required.

You won't find anything in the Texas Driver's Manual about them.

But the Federal Government now considers the flashing yellow arrow a "standard traffic control device."

As traffic control strategies and equipment evolve, we, as drivers must learn to adapt to the new devices.

But, Eng admits, some intersections just aren't flashing yellow arrow-friendly in Tyler.

You won't find them where there are two, left-turn lanes, or where there's limited sight for drivers.

Throughout our investigation, we learned there were spikes in the number of crashes at some intersections studied. But, the city says the signals weren't the only factor at those locations.

Overall, the city says accidents went down 8%.

The State of Texas is supposed to adopt it's form of the Federal Highway Administration's manual for Uniform Traffic Control Devices which is slated to include these flashing yellow light signals

Tyler's traffic engineer tells us he hopes to do more driver education in the future, including some sort of public service announcement.

Copyright 2011 KLTV. All rights reserved.

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