2007-11-07 / Opinions


Drivers respond to letter about fast traffic lights

Dear Editor,

Mr. Dean's letter of Oct. 24 was both lengthy and in point, moot. Police officers detain drivers who cross the white pavement line as the red light cycles. The time to clear the intersection is not a factor.

I, as most Richmond area drivers, tire of the bullying tactic wherein drivers run through the turning lane's amber, even red lights. We are all late, we are all tired, we are all distracted from the task at hand: driving.

You put yourself and your family members into harm's way by needing to get to your destination 30 seconds faster. You put another's family in danger with your selfishness. Nobody likes a bully. Give us all a brake.

Barry Lambert


Dear Editor,

I am not an engineer, however, I am in total agreement with the opinions of David M. Dean [Oct. 24] in reference to the traffic lights at Huguenot Road and Midlothian Turnpike. I have noticed, and suffered through, the same problems at every traffic light up and down Midlothian Turnpike, as well as on Huguenot Road, to include exiting from Chesterfield Towne Center.

The turn lights only allow three cars to turn before they change, which causes drivers to take unnecessary chances, especially during heavy traffic periods. If the first car awaiting the light change is not paying absolute attention and does not move immediately, only two cars can turn. On the other hand, if that car does take off immediately, there is a great chance that someone coming from a different direction has run the red (or amber) light, and there will be an accident. I was taught to always wait a second after the light turns green to ensure that everyone has stopped, but you can't do this at these intersections.

I know that the Virginia Department of Transportation [VDOT] is aware of the backup of vehicles attempting to turn left either onto or off of Midlothian Turnpike during peak times, so why can't the duration of the turn lights be extended even more than the 3.5 seconds during these times?

The other problem in this area is the fourway stop sign at Alverser and Old Buckingham roads. Most people do not know how they are to react at a four-way stop sign. Some just keep going whether they were there first or not. I try to notice which cars were there when I get there, knowing that they should go first. However, there have been times when I have to just sit there and let all the fools go rather than have one hit me. Please advise our people of what to do when they reach a fourway stop sign. Maybe the police should park around there and ticket some of them.

Thanks, Mr. Dean, for doing your homework about this problem. I just wish VDOT and other county officials would do their's. Wouldn't you have thought that, after all the tickets that were handed out, someone would have put their finger on the problem?

Edmonia Wynn


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