Installation of signal lights at the Wildcat Way-Arbala Road intersection will incorporate a new concept of signals for drivers making left turns. The new type of left-turn signal will employ a flashing yellow arrow that, traffic experts say, will reduce confusion, improve safety and make it easier for more vehicles to get through an intersection.
Texas Department of Transportation workers activate the flashing yellow arrow, or FYA, when the new signal lights are turned on.
This will be the first FYA signal to be implemented in TxDoT’s Paris District, according to Tray Turner in the Paris office.
A “permissive left-turn operation” is one where vehicles do not have a protected left turn and must yield to oncoming traffic. Eventually, FYA signals will replace the traditional round green signal at some left turns commonly used throughout the state.
Research shows that the new FYA signal is safer, more efficient and presents a more consistent approach to traffic lights for left-turn lanes. TxDOT recently changed its traffic control device standards to reflect national changes, including the use of the FYA signal system.
"Based on recent safety studies, the flashing arrow left-turn signal reduces traffic crashes for those vehicles turning left at busy intersections," said Paris District Engineer Bobby Littlefield. "Sometimes motorists are confused about when to turn with the standard green circular traffic signal. The new FYA signal is easier for drivers to understand."
FYA signals will be placed at certain left-turn lanes in signalized intersections and contain a flashing yellow arrow as well as a steady green, yellow and red arrow.
These new displays are similar to standard traffic signals:
A steady green arrow allows the driver to make a protected left turn.
A flashing yellow arrow allows the driver to turn left, but alerts the driver to yield to oncoming traffic.
A steady yellow arrow alerts the driver that the signal is about to turn red and they should prepare to stop or safely complete the turn.
A steady red arrow requires the driver to stop.
The FYA system will be gradually introduced across the state and the nation as new signals are installed and existing signals are replaced.
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