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Old November 14th, 2007, 08:48 AM   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by taiwanesedrummer36 View Post
Typical traffic signals from Everett, Washington:
...
Typical traffic signals in Seattle, Washington:
...
As I commented before, I like the widespread use of dedicated left turn signals in these locales. Washington seems to do a good job.
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Old November 14th, 2007, 12:07 PM   #82
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheCat View Post
As I commented before, I like the widespread use of dedicated left turn signals in these locales. Washington seems to do a good job.
Most countries I've lived in or been to over a length of time seem to have protected turning on traffic lights - Green filter lights are common in the UK on major roads, same with Australia and New Zealand too. Germany I think has arrows on their traffic lights that allow protected turns.
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Old November 14th, 2007, 04:12 PM   #83
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In Melbourne, it's a bit 50/50 really.

Some intersections have no traffic light arrows, where right turning traffic moves into the intersection (many drivers seem to not do this) and proceeds when there is no traffic coming the other way. Some will have the right turn arrow, but without the red arrow to allow right turns if there is no traffic in the opposite direction, and busy roads will include the red arrow.

On the other side of the spectrum, there's the crazy set of lights with 14 lamps - red yellow and green for each of left turning traffic, straight ahead traffic, right turning traffic and trams, plus a red and a green signal for cyclists, all mounted on a single fixture on a single pole.

1940's style timer:
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Old November 14th, 2007, 04:21 PM   #84
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Hey is Victoria the only state in Australia that doesn't use the white stripe around the boards?
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Old November 14th, 2007, 04:58 PM   #85
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In Toronto, unfortunately, you can turn left without a green arrow in pretty much all intersections, including very busy/wide ones, and sometimes with very limited visibility. In some cases I think it is just insane, like turning left from Dufferin/Allen Rd. onto Sheppard, while going south (for the locals, of course). That road is basically an expressway with 3 lanes into each direction, a downhill slope (while looking ahead) and a curve, with a speed limit of 70 km/h. It has a left turn arrow, but when it disappears, you can still turn on green after yielding, with almost no visibility.

And on the note of many lamps, I found it strange in NYC, where the left turn green and yellow arrows had separate lamps. In Toronto the same one turns into either colour.
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Old November 14th, 2007, 05:36 PM   #86
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TheCat, unprotected left turns give you additional driving skills When I was in Vancouver, I noticed that there were indeed very few protected left turns, and, compared to Washington, they were very quick. Too quick for my taste. But hey, you would stop complaining if you saw an unprotected left turn in Russia across 3 lanes of busy traffic. In San Francisco, it can be the case too, but at least they prohibit left turns during rush hours.
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Old November 14th, 2007, 06:48 PM   #87
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Traffic lights we have:




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Old November 14th, 2007, 10:28 PM   #88
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More mexican traffic lights

Tijuana:





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Old November 15th, 2007, 01:54 PM   #89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex Von Königsberg View Post
TheCat, unprotected left turns give you additional driving skills When I was in Vancouver, I noticed that there were indeed very few protected left turns, and, compared to Washington, they were very quick. Too quick for my taste. But hey, you would stop complaining if you saw an unprotected left turn in Russia across 3 lanes of busy traffic. In San Francisco, it can be the case too, but at least they prohibit left turns during rush hours.
Hehe, you may be right, I guess it mostly has to do with the overall culture. For example, in Israel, where all turns are protected, the rate of accidents is still higher. I just think that on some intersections, like the one I mentioned in my previous post, there is almost zero visibility and dedicated turn lights should be mandated. After all, we do have roads in Toronto (although not many) where separate dedicated left turn signals are installed. Perhaps I'll try to take some photos when I have the opportunity, but currently I'm busy with studies and don't have much opportunity to take out the car.

In downtown Toronto during rush hour we also have many streets with prohibited left turns, but that's mostly because the streetcars run in the left lane, and there is no space for left turn lanes, so obviously left turning traffic would impede the streetcars, which wouldn't be appreciated by people like me, who take it in the morning Come to think of it, San Francisco is one of few places where like Toronto, they also have streetcars, so maybe that's the reason they prohibit left turns too.
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Old November 15th, 2007, 09:20 PM   #90
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since there are alot of Ontarians in this thread. I got one quick question.

Is ontario the only place on earth to have a yellow back faceplate that surrounds the signal. I haven't seen that anywhere else!

And our Traffic signals seem to be built to a very high standard. Heck our temporary construction lights seem better than what is seen in many american states. Is that just me?
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Old November 15th, 2007, 09:27 PM   #91
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Quote:
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Come to think of it, San Francisco is one of few places where like Toronto, they also have streetcars, so maybe that's the reason they prohibit left turns too.
Not really. In San Francisco, there are quite a few tram tracks, but normally they are located on rather narrow streets (two tracks, and one auto lane in each direction). I was referring to some wide 3+3 streets where oncoming traffics are separated by the kerb. Although they typically don't have a left turn pocket, you can still turn left but only during non-rush hours. I think the schedule is implemented to prevent hazardous situations associated with turning across three lanes of traffic and also to prevent the clogging of the left lane.

I wanted to show a picture of such intersection, but Google didn't let me. Try this - go to Google maps, type Laguna St & Lombard St, San Francisco, CA and choose Street View. Then look East on Lombard

Last edited by Alex Von Königsberg; November 15th, 2007 at 09:38 PM.
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Old November 16th, 2007, 02:38 AM   #92
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Quote:
Originally Posted by go_leafs_go02 View Post
since there are alot of Ontarians in this thread. I got one quick question.

Is ontario the only place on earth to have a yellow back faceplate that surrounds the signal. I haven't seen that anywhere else!

And our Traffic signals seem to be built to a very high standard. Heck our temporary construction lights seem better than what is seen in many american states. Is that just me?
No, we're not the only ones. I've seen many yellow traffic lights in NYC, and I think (by looking at pictures) in Mexico they have them too, although our faceplate seems to be bigger and wider. Our signals are indeed built to a pretty high standard, and higher than some US locales (but not everywhere, as many of the photos in this thread show, particularly on the west coast). One strange thing I noticed in NYC is that they had 2 lamps for the left turn phase, one for each of the green and yellow arrows. On the other hand, in Ontario we have just one arrow which turns from green to yellow. Also, I think they should replace all of our traffic lights to use LEDs. I've seen many LED lights in Mississauga, but in Toronto they are still mostly lamps.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex Von Königsberg View Post
Not really. In San Francisco, there are quite a few tram tracks, but normally they are located on rather narrow streets (two tracks, and one auto lane in each direction). I was referring to some wide 3+3 streets where oncoming traffics are separated by the kerb. Although they typically don't have a left turn pocket, you can still turn left but only during non-rush hours. I think the schedule is implemented to prevent hazardous situations associated with turning across three lanes of traffic and also to prevent the clogging of the left lane.

I wanted to show a picture of such intersection, but Google didn't let me. Try this - go to Google maps, type Laguna St & Lombard St, San Francisco, CA and choose Street View. Then look East on Lombard
That makes sense, but that's exactly the problem - almost all major streets in Toronto outside of downtown, and in the suburbs, are 3 lanes in each direction, and most have extremely heavy traffic during rush hour. However, you may turn left without a dedicated left turn signal on pretty much all of them. I looked at the intersection that you mentioned in SF, it looks very similar to many intersections in Toronto.

Surprisingly, I was able to find a picture of the exact intersection in Toronto I was talking about earlier, although unfortunately it is somewhat far to see clearly. I don't know if it's very clear, but one can see that the visibility of oncoming traffic there is minimal, because the cars are coming uphill towards you. Especially, it is often not clear if a car is in the left-turn lane, or just coming toward you in the left-most through lane. Overall, including the turn lane, there are 4 lanes there into the oncoming direction. Also, this road is actually a part of a partially-built (but stopped) expressway, with a speed limit of 70 km/h. It is perhaps not that bad, but this is one turn I make relatively often to get to the subway station, and sometimes in heavy traffic it just pisses me off

Here is the not-so-great picture:
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Old November 16th, 2007, 05:46 AM   #93
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Just a quick question, maybe a stupid one, but I'm curious.

I've lived in the States for the majority of my life. And here, when you are waiting on red light, it goes straight to green. They only use the yellow light right before the red one.

But in Poland, the traffic lights go in this sequence. It is green, then goes to yellow for a few seconds, then ends on red to stop. Then after being on red for a while, it goes back to yellow for a few seconds and then eventually to green.

Is this the standard across Europe? I didn't notice this in other countries in Europe (I suppose I should have but I didn't bother to notice, too busy trying to get to my hostel and such :p) I was kind of confused at first, wondering why they needed the yellow light before the green one, since here yellow means "yield" while red means "complete stop." Thanks for any info.
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Old November 16th, 2007, 06:34 AM   #94
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheCat View Post
No, we're not the only ones. I've seen many yellow traffic lights in NYC, and I think (by looking at pictures) in Mexico they have them too, although our faceplate seems to be bigger and wider. Our signals are indeed built to a pretty high standard, and higher than some US locales (but not everywhere, as many of the photos in this thread show, particularly on the west coast). One strange thing I noticed in NYC is that they had 2 lamps for the left turn phase, one for each of the green and yellow arrows. On the other hand, in Ontario we have just one arrow which turns from green to yellow. Also, I think they should replace all of our traffic lights to use LEDs. I've seen many LED lights in Mississauga, but in Toronto they are still mostly lamps.


The green and yellow arrows depends on what area you are in. There are plenty of 5 light signals (Red, Yellow, Green, Yellow Arrow, Green Arrow) in Ontario. Hamilton uses them in many places, and I know Chatham the same way.

As for the LED conversion. It's happening. London did it about 2 years ago, all within a few months, including all pedestrian signals. They removed the old two light pedestrian signal (Hand over the Walking Person) and replaced them all with a single light where the signals are LED and overlapping.

All new lights are LED that are being installed now, and it is a rather large cost to replace them all at once.
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Old November 16th, 2007, 07:32 AM   #95
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Czas na Żywiec View Post
Just a quick question, maybe a stupid one, but I'm curious.

I've lived in the States for the majority of my life. And here, when you are waiting on red light, it goes straight to green. They only use the yellow light right before the red one.

But in Poland, the traffic lights go in this sequence. It is green, then goes to yellow for a few seconds, then ends on red to stop. Then after being on red for a while, it goes back to yellow for a few seconds and then eventually to green.

Is this the standard across Europe? I didn't notice this in other countries in Europe (I suppose I should have but I didn't bother to notice, too busy trying to get to my hostel and such :p) I was kind of confused at first, wondering why they needed the yellow light before the green one, since here yellow means "yield" while red means "complete stop." Thanks for any info.
Are you sure that it goes from yellow to green? I think it's supposed to be from red+yellow to green. In any case, it is not a European standard by any means, but some countries like the UK, Germany, the Baltic countries, Croatia, Poland (apparently), and some others use this. Israel is another country that uses this sequence. The reason for this is mostly historical, and apparently is intended to allow drivers to change into the correct gear before the light switches to green. In North America, and I presume any other place where the majority of vehicles use automatic transmission, this would be unnecessary or for aesthetic purposes only.

Whether there is any benefit in this phase is hard to say, although according to some it actually has a disadvantage, since drivers tend to start moving before the green light appears. From what I heard (and I may be wrong), some countries have canceled this phase for this reason.

Quote:
Originally Posted by go_leafs_go02 View Post
The green and yellow arrows depends on what area you are in. There are plenty of 5 light signals (Red, Yellow, Green, Yellow Arrow, Green Arrow) in Ontario. Hamilton uses them in many places, and I know Chatham the same way.

As for the LED conversion. It's happening. London did it about 2 years ago, all within a few months, including all pedestrian signals. They removed the old two light pedestrian signal (Hand over the Walking Person) and replaced them all with a single light where the signals are LED and overlapping.

All new lights are LED that are being installed now, and it is a rather large cost to replace them all at once.
That's very interesting, as I've never seen a single 5-phase traffic light in the GTA. Nice to know
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Old November 16th, 2007, 09:59 AM   #96
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Czas na Żywiec View Post
But in Poland, the traffic lights go in this sequence. It is green, then goes to yellow for a few seconds, then ends on red to stop. Then after being on red for a while, it goes back to yellow for a few seconds and then eventually to green.

Is this the standard across Europe? I didn't notice this in other countries in Europe
Like TheCat said, it's supposed to change from Red to Red+Yellow to Green. It is not the standard in Europe, but I know for sure that exUSSR countries, Eastern European countries and Germany have this phase.

If you noticed, the main traffic lights in Europe are positioned before the intersection, so you can't see the traffic light for the cross traffic. Plus, everyone is driving manual cars. In America, since the traffic lights are after the intersections, you can easily see what light the cross traffic is facing. So if you memorise the light pattern well, you can easily figure out when your light will turn green.
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Old November 16th, 2007, 03:30 PM   #97
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Quote:
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Like TheCat said, it's supposed to change from Red to Red+Yellow to Green. It is not the standard in Europe, but I know for sure that exUSSR countries, Eastern European countries and Germany have this phase.
It depends on the state. From the top of my head, the following countries have red&amber: UK, Iceland, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Hungary plus many parts of eastern Europe but I'm not so sure in that region.

Notable exceptions are Ireland, France, Spain, Portugal and Italy.

Red&Amber is also used in Hong Kong, Macau and some provinces of mainland China. Some Australian states used to use it too, such as Victoria, where there are still some examples, but federal standards phased them out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex Von Königsberg View Post
If you noticed, the main traffic lights in Europe are positioned before the intersection, so you can't see the traffic light for the cross traffic. Plus, everyone is driving manual cars. In America, since the traffic lights are after the intersections, you can easily see what light the cross traffic is facing. So if you memorise the light pattern well, you can easily figure out when your light will turn green.
Not in the UK, Ireland nor, I think, the much rest of Northern Europe. Here, you have signals both at and beyond the stopline.

Another almost uniquely British convention (as I've only actually seen it in the UK, Ireland, Hong Kong & Macau) is that pedestrians are never given a walk phase with traffic going in the same direction. There has to be no vehicle traffic whatsoever being directed over the crosswalk in order for the green man to come on.
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Old November 16th, 2007, 04:46 PM   #98
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I've also noticed in the GTA that newer installations are usually the 12" by 12" by 12" setups, as opposed to the 12" by 8" by 8" setups. Anyone else notice this?

I was told by my driving instructor that back in the day, they would do this because when they used lamps, the lights were harder to see, and a larger red one would be easier to see.

Also, TheCat or anyone else, do you know fo any black panel lights in Ontario?
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Old November 17th, 2007, 12:10 AM   #99
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Quote:
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I've also noticed in the GTA that newer installations are usually the 12" by 12" by 12" setups, as opposed to the 12" by 8" by 8" setups. Anyone else notice this?

I was told by my driving instructor that back in the day, they would do this because when they used lamps, the lights were harder to see, and a larger red one would be easier to see.

Also, TheCat or anyone else, do you know fo any black panel lights in Ontario?
The city of Hamilton uses black panel lights. If you are talking about the actual signal.

They are the exception I believe. Everywhere else lights are completely yellow, (signal and backing) but Hamilton has a black signal and yellow backing.

Looks kinda stupid if you ask me, but whatever.
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Old February 22nd, 2008, 12:32 PM   #100
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Traffic Light Thread

Post pics of your town or city/and or other towns or cities traffic lights.

There are so many different kinds !

Ill start

Melbourne.




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