Re: the Monday letter, “Traffic light switch causing backups,” about why lights are longer and backups more prevalent. I have also noted this situation in northern Palm Beach County. I sit at many lights a lot longer than before and see a lot of backups.
They have previously operated on a two-cycle basis. 1.The normal way is that the left-hand turns from both directions have a right of way at the same time, along with the right-hand turns. 2. The folks going straight have the right of way. Normally, Military Trail and Northlake Boulevard takes about two minutes.
The lights are now working on a three-phase system. 1. All traffic going west and left has a green light; eastbound is all red. 2. After a period, the traffic going east will get a green light. 3. Then, after the westbound and left-turn folks get a red light, there is a green light for the left-hand turns for those headed east.
This new phasing of signals can add 50 percent more time at an intersection. The county needs to go back to the original two-phase system.
ED BOWERS, PALM BEACH GARDENS