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Henrico installs new traffic signals in hopes of improving safety

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HENRICO, Va. (WTVR)–Henrico County hopes that installing a new kind of traffic signal will improve safety for motorist and pedestrians.

In a press release, the Henrico County Department of Public Works announced that these new traffic signals will be installed at five additional intersections over the next two weeks.

They said that the yellow-flashing signal is to help motorists better understand the need to yield to oncoming traffic before turning left.

The arrow will flash yellow, which indicates that motorists may proceed after yielding to oncoming traffic and pedestrians.

This replaces the concept of yielding, when turning left, to oncoming traffic if the light is simply green.

These new signals replace ones that have permitted left turns by showing a solid green circle with a sign that reads, “Left Turn Yield on Green.”

The flashing yellow arrow appears during the signal’s normal cycles, which also guides motorists with solid red, green and yellow arrows.

So far, signals have been in place at four intersections in the West End.

The new signals are scheduled to be installed by May 11 at Cox Road and Waterfront Place; Cox and Sadler Place; Nuckols Road and Snowmass Road/Capital One Way; Nuckols and Concourse Boulevard; and Shady Grove and Twin Hickory roads.

Police will direct traffic while work is under way.

The press release states that The Federal Highway Administration and Virginia Department of Transportation have approved the use of signals with flashing yellow arrows because research shows a reduction in the number of left-turn accidents by more clearly conveying that motorists must yield to oncoming traffic and pedestrians before proceeding.

The change over has been occurring nationwide.

What are your thoughts? Does this make the turning situation more clear? Or more confusing?