Traffic Talk: Waiting for traffic lights make drivers see red

Don Gammill: How long is long enough when you’re waiting for a traffic light to change?
by Don Gammill Modified: March 24, 2014 at 10:00 am •  Published: March 24, 2014
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My buddy, Bubba, claims to be a patient man. He says he just doesn’t like to wait.

He REALLY doesn’t — not at a restaurant, not in the grocery store line, not at a sporting event ticket booth and certainly not at a stoplight.

You don’t want to be in front of him when the light finally does change, because he’s going to come at you like he’s going to drive up your tailpipe to make up for lost time.

“I got things to do and I don’t want to sit there wasting time,” he says.

Believe him.

But Bubba isn’t alone. There are lights that crank up the bad feelings in most of us. And there are lights that just simply might need a little adjustment, such as this reader suggests.

The traffic light at 8200 S Penn. stays red to the eastbound/westbound traffic long enough to grow a beard when you are waiting for it to change. When it does change to green, it doesn't stay green long enough for all the cars that have backed up to clear the intersection. I have witnessed several drivers run the red light, probably because they thought it was hung in the red position. Many accidents happened at this corner prior to the installation of this light, so it is very needed, but the timing needs to be changed. I don't know who to contact about this problem so I thought I would send you this note, maybe you can see that the right department gets it.


by Don Gammill
General Assignment Editor and Columnist
Don Gammill is general assignment editor and columnist. A native of Ponca City, he graduated from Central State University (now the University of Central Oklahoma). While in college, he was a sports stringer for The Oklahoma City Times....
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