Traffic signals are like a piano. Well-tuned and on trained hand, beautiful music flows. However, improperly handled and on untrained hand, agitation and dissatisfaction frequently occur. Due to its nature of restrictive control, signalization has been widely viewed as the universal solution to intersection problems. When traffic signal control is justified and properly designed, it may achieve orderly traffic movement, reduce the frequency of certain types of accidents, and coordinate continuous flow of traffic. However, unjustified, poorly designed, or improperly operated traffic signals may reduce movement efficiency by increasing the frequency and severity of some types of accidents, reducing intersection capacity, producing excessive intersection delay, and encouraging disobedience to signal indications. The focus of this chapter is the need studies that warrant intersection signalization, while the rest of the book deals with traffic signal design to ensure safe and efficient traffic movement.
MUTCD Signalization Need studies Warrants Vehicular volume School crossing Coordinated signal system Crash experience Roadway network Grade crossing
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