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2009 Edition Chapter 4D. Traffic Control Signal Features

Section 4D.01 General

Support:
01 The features of traffic control signals of interest to road users are the location, design, and meaning of the signal indications. Uniformity in the design features that affect the traffic to be controlled, as set forth in this Manual, is especially important for the safety and efficiency of operations.

02 Traffic control signals can be operated in pretimed, semi-actuated, or full-actuated modes. For isolated (non-interconnected) signalized locations on rural high-speed highways, full-actuated mode with advance vehicle detection on the high-speed approaches is typically used. These features are designed to reduce the frequency with which the onset of the yellow change interval is displayed when high-speed approaching vehicles are in the "dilemma zone" such that the drivers of these high-speed vehicles find it difficult to decide whether to stop or proceed.

Standard:
03 When a traffic control signal is not in operation, such as before it is placed in service, during seasonal shutdowns, or when it is not desirable to operate the traffic control signal, the signal faces shall be covered, turned, or taken down to clearly indicate that the traffic control signal is not in operation.

Support:
04 Seasonal shutdown is a condition in which a permanent traffic signal is turned off or otherwise made non-operational during a particular season when its operation is not justified. This might be applied in a community where tourist traffic during most of the year justifies the permanent signalization, but a seasonal shutdown of the signal during an annual period of lower tourist traffic would reduce delays; or where a major traffic generator, such as a large factory, justifies the permanent signalization, but the large factory is shut down for an annual factory vacation for a few weeks in the summer.

Standard:
05 A traffic control signal shall control traffic only at the intersection or midblock location where the signal faces are placed.

06 Midblock crosswalks shall not be signalized if they are located within 300 feet from the nearest traffic control signal, unless the proposed traffic control signal will not restrict the progressive movement of traffic.

Guidance:
07 A midblock crosswalk location should not be controlled by a traffic control signal if the crosswalk is located within 100 feet from side streets or driveways that are controlled by STOP signs or YIELD signs.

08 Engineering judgment should be used to determine the proper phasing and timing for a traffic control signal. Since traffic flows and patterns change, phasing and timing should be reevaluated regularly and updated if needed.

09 Traffic control signals within 1/2 mile of one another along a major route or in a network of intersecting major routes should be coordinated, preferably with interconnected controller units. Where traffic control signals that are within 1/2 mile of one another along a major route have a jurisdictional boundary or a boundary between different signal systems between them, coordination across the boundary should be considered.

Support:
10 Signal coordination need not be maintained between control sections that operate on different cycle lengths.

11 For coordination with grade crossing signals and movable bridge signals, see Sections 4D.27, 4J.03, 8C.09, and 8C.10.

Section 4D.02 Responsibility for Operation and Maintenance

Guidance:
01 Prior to installing any traffic control signal, the responsibility for the maintenance of the signal and all of the appurtenances, hardware, software, and the timing plan(s) should be clearly established. The responsible agency should provide for the maintenance of the traffic control signal and all of its appurtenances in a competent manner.

02 To this end the agency should:

  1. Keep every controller assembly in effective operation in accordance with its predetermined timing schedule; check the operation of the controller assembly frequently enough to verify that it is operating in accordance with the predetermined timing schedule; and establish a policy to maintain a record of all timing changes and that only authorized persons are permitted to make timing changes;
  2. Clean the optical system of the signal sections and replace the light sources as frequently as experience proves necessary;
  3. Clean and service equipment and other appurtenances as frequently as experience proves necessary;
  4. Provide for alternate operation of the traffic control signal during a period of failure, using flashing mode or manual control, or manual traffic direction by proper authorities as might be required by traffic volumes or congestion, or by erecting other traffic control devices;
  5. Have properly skilled maintenance personnel available without undue delay for all signal malfunctions and signal indication failures;
  6. Provide spare equipment to minimize the interruption of traffic control signal operation as a result of equipment failure;
  7. Provide for the availability of properly skilled maintenance personnel for the repair of all components; and
  8. Maintain the appearance of the signal displays and equipment.

Section 4D.03 Provisions for Pedestrians

Support:
01 Chapter 4E contains additional information regarding pedestrian signals and Chapter 4F contains additional information regarding pedestrian hybrid beacons.

Standard:
02 The design and operation of traffic control signals shall take into consideration the needs of pedestrian as well as vehicular traffic.

03 If engineering judgment indicates the need for provisions for a given pedestrian movement, signal faces conveniently visible to pedestrians shall be provided by pedestrian signal heads (see Chapter 4E) or a vehicular signal face(s) for a concurrent vehicular movement.

Guidance:
04 Accessible pedestrian signals (see Sections 4E.09 through 4E.13) that provide information in non-visual formats (such as audible tones, speech messages, and/or vibrating surfaces) should be provided where determined appropriate by engineering judgment.

05 Where pedestrian movements regularly occur, pedestrians should be provided with sufficient time to cross the roadway by adjusting the traffic control signal operation and timing to provide sufficient crossing time every cycle or by providing pedestrian detectors.

06 If it is necessary or desirable to prohibit certain pedestrian movements at a traffic control signal location, No Pedestrian Crossing (R9-3) signs (see Section 2B.51) should be used if it is not practical to provide a barrier or other physical feature to physically prevent the pedestrian movements.

Section 4D.04 Meaning of Vehicular Signal Indications

Support:
01 The "Uniform Vehicle Code" (see Section 1A.11) is the primary source for the standards for the meaning of vehicular signal indications to both vehicle operators and pedestrians as provided in this Section, and the standards for the meaning of separate pedestrian signal head indications as provided in Section 4E.02.

02 The physical area that is defined as being "within the intersection" is dependent upon the conditions that are described in the definition of intersection in Section 1A.13.

Standard:
03 The following meanings shall be given to highway traffic signal indications for vehicles and pedestrians:

  1. Steady green signal indications shall have the following meanings:
    1. Vehicular traffic facing a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication is permitted to proceed straight through or turn right or left or make a U-turn movement except as such movement is modified by lane-use signs, turn prohibition signs, lane markings, roadway design, separate turn signal indications, or other traffic control devices.

      Such vehicular traffic, including vehicles turning right or left or making a U-turn movement, shall yield the right-of-way to:

      1. Pedestrians lawfully within an associated crosswalk, and
      2. Other vehicles lawfully within the intersection.

      In addition, vehicular traffic turning left or making a U-turn movement to the left shall yield the right-of-way to other vehicles approaching from the opposite direction so closely as to constitute an immediate hazard during the time when such turning vehicle is moving across or within the intersection.

    2. Vehicular traffic facing a GREEN ARROW signal indication, displayed alone or in combination with another signal indication, is permitted to cautiously enter the intersection only to make the movement indicated by such arrow, or such other movement as is permitted by other signal indications displayed at the same time.

      Such vehicular traffic, including vehicles turning right or left or making a U-turn movement, shall yield the right-of-way to:

      1. Pedestrians lawfully within an associated crosswalk, and
      2. Other vehicles lawfully within the intersection.
    3. Pedestrians facing a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication, unless otherwise directed by a pedestrian signal indication or other traffic control device, are permitted to proceed across the roadway within any marked or unmarked associated crosswalk. The pedestrian shall yield the right-of-way to vehicles lawfully within the intersection or so close as to create an immediate hazard at the time that the green signal indication is first displayed.
    4. Pedestrians facing a GREEN ARROW signal indication, unless otherwise directed by a pedestrian signal indication or other traffic control device, shall not cross the roadway.
  2. Steady yellow signal indications shall have the following meanings:
    1. Vehicular traffic facing a steady CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication is thereby warned that the related green movement or the related flashing arrow movement is being terminated or that a steady red signal indication will be displayed immediately thereafter when vehicular traffic shall not enter the intersection. The rules set forth concerning vehicular operation under the movement(s) being terminated shall continue to apply while the steady CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication is displayed.
    2. Vehicular traffic facing a steady YELLOW ARROW signal indication is thereby warned that the related GREEN ARROW movement or the related flashing arrow movement is being terminated. The rules set forth concerning vehicular operation under the movement(s) being terminated shall continue to apply while the steady YELLOW ARROW signal indication is displayed.
    3. Pedestrians facing a steady CIRCULAR YELLOW or YELLOW ARROW signal indication, unless otherwise directed by a pedestrian signal indication or other traffic control device shall not start to cross the roadway.
  3. Steady red signal indications shall have the following meanings:
    1. Vehicular traffic facing a steady CIRCULAR RED signal indication, unless entering the intersection to make another movement permitted by another signal indication, shall stop at a clearly marked stop line; but if there is no stop line, traffic shall stop before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection; or if there is no crosswalk, then before entering the intersection; and shall remain stopped until a signal indication to proceed is displayed, or as provided below.

      Except when a traffic control device is in place prohibiting a turn on red or a steady RED ARROW signal indication is displayed, vehicular traffic facing a steady CIRCULAR RED signal indication is permitted to enter the intersection to turn right, or to turn left from a one-way street into a one-way street, after stopping. The right to proceed with the turn shall be subject to the rules applicable after making a stop at a STOP sign.

    2. Vehicular traffic facing a steady RED ARROW signal indication shall not enter the intersection to make the movement indicated by the arrow and, unless entering the intersection to make another movement permitted by another signal indication, shall stop at a clearly marked stop line; but if there is no stop line, before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection; or if there is no crosswalk, then before entering the intersection; and shall remain stopped until a signal indication or other traffic control device permitting the movement indicated by such RED ARROW is displayed.

      When a traffic control device is in place permitting a turn on a steady RED ARROW signal indication, vehicular traffic facing a steady RED ARROW signal indication is permitted to enter the intersection to make the movement indicated by the arrow signal indication, after stopping. The right to proceed with the turn shall be limited to the direction indicated by the arrow and shall be subject to the rules applicable after making a stop at a STOP sign.

    3. Unless otherwise directed by a pedestrian signal indication or other traffic control device, pedestrians facing a steady CIRCULAR RED or steady RED ARROW signal indication shall not enter the roadway.
  4. A flashing green signal indication has no meaning and shall not be used.
  5. Flashing yellow signal indications shall have the following meanings:
    1. Vehicular traffic, on an approach to an intersection, facing a flashing CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication is permitted to cautiously enter the intersection to proceed straight through or turn right or left or make a U-turn except as such movement is modified by lane-use signs, turn prohibition signs, lane markings, roadway design, separate turn signal indications, or other traffic control devices.

      Such vehicular traffic, including vehicles turning right or left or making a U-turn, shall yield the right-of-way to:

      1. Pedestrians lawfully within an associated crosswalk, and
      2. Other vehicles lawfully within the intersection.

      In addition, vehicular traffic turning left or making a U-turn to the left shall yield the right-of-way to other vehicles approaching from the opposite direction so closely as to constitute an immediate hazard during the time when such turning vehicle is moving across or within the intersection.

    2. Vehicular traffic, on an approach to an intersection, facing a flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indication, displayed alone or in combination with another signal indication, is permitted to cautiously enter the intersection only to make the movement indicated by such arrow, or other such movement as is permitted by other signal indications displayed at the same time.

      Such vehicular traffic, including vehicles turning right or left or making a U-turn, shall yield the right-of-way to:

      1. (a) Pedestrians lawfully within an associated crosswalk, and
      2. (b) Other vehicles lawfully within the intersection.

      In addition, vehicular traffic turning left or making a U-turn to the left shall yield the right-of-way to other vehicles approaching from the opposite direction so closely as to constitute an immediate hazard during the time when such turning vehicle is moving across or within the intersection.

    3. Pedestrians facing any flashing yellow signal indication at an intersection, unless otherwise directed by a pedestrian signal indication or other traffic control device, are permitted to proceed across the roadway within any marked or unmarked associated crosswalk. Pedestrians shall yield the right-of-way to vehicles lawfully within the intersection at the time that the flashing yellow signal indication is first displayed.
    4. When a flashing CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication(s) is displayed as a beacon (see Chapter 4L) to supplement another traffic control device, road users are notified that there is a need to pay extra attention to the message contained thereon or that the regulatory or warning requirements of the other traffic control device, which might not be applicable at all times, are currently applicable.
  6. Flashing red signal indications shall have the following meanings:
    1. Vehicular traffic, on an approach to an intersection, facing a flashing CIRCULAR RED signal indication shall stop at a clearly marked stop line; but if there is no stop line, before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection; or if there is no crosswalk, at the point nearest the intersecting roadway where the driver has a view of approaching traffic on the intersecting roadway before entering the intersection. The right to proceed shall be subject to the rules applicable after making a stop at a STOP sign.
    2. Vehicular traffic, on an approach to an intersection, facing a flashing RED ARROW signal indication if intending to turn in the direction indicated by the arrow shall stop at a clearly marked stop line; but if there is no stop line, before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection; or if there is no crosswalk, at the point nearest the intersecting roadway where the driver has a view of approaching traffic on the intersecting roadway before entering the intersection. The right to proceed with the turn shall be limited to the direction indicated by the arrow and shall be subject to the rules applicable after making a stop at a STOP sign.
    3. Pedestrians facing any flashing red signal indication at an intersection, unless otherwise directed by a pedestrian signal indication or other traffic control device, are permitted to proceed across the roadway within any marked or unmarked associated crosswalk. Pedestrians shall yield the right-of-way to vehicles lawfully within the intersection at the time that the flashing red signal indication is first displayed.
    4. When a flashing CIRCULAR RED signal indication(s) is displayed as a beacon (see Chapter 4L) to supplement another traffic control device, road users are notified that there is a need to pay extra attention to the message contained thereon or that the regulatory requirements of the other traffic control device, which might not be applicable at all times, are currently applicable. Use of this signal indication shall be limited to supplementing STOP (R1-1), DO NOT ENTER (R5-1), or WRONG WAY (R5-1a) signs, and to applications where compliance with the supplemented traffic control device requires a stop at a designated point.

Section 4D.05 Application of Steady Signal Indications

Standard:
01 When a traffic control signal is being operated in a steady (stop-and-go) mode, at least one indication in each signal face shall be displayed at any given time.

02 A signal face(s) that controls a particular vehicular movement during any interval of a cycle shall control that same movement during all intervals of the cycle.

03 Steady signal indications shall be applied as follows:

  1. A steady CIRCULAR RED signal indication:
    1. Shall be displayed when it is intended to prohibit traffic, except pedestrians directed by a pedestrian signal head, from entering the intersection or other controlled area. Turning after stopping is permitted as stated in Item C.1 in Paragraph 3 of Section 4D.04.
    2. Shall be displayed with the appropriate GREEN ARROW signal indications when it is intended to permit traffic to make a specified turn or turns, and to prohibit traffic from proceeding straight ahead through the intersection or other controlled area, except in protected only mode operation (see Sections 4D.19 and 4D.23), or in protected/permissive mode operation with separate turn signal faces (see Sections 4D.20 and 4D.24).
  2. A steady CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication:
    1. Shall be displayed following a CIRCULAR GREEN or straight-through GREEN ARROW signal indication in the same signal face.
    2. Shall not be displayed in conjunction with the change from the CIRCULAR RED signal indication to the CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication.
    3. Shall be followed by a CIRCULAR RED signal indication except that, when entering preemption operation, the return to the previous CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication shall be permitted following a steady CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication (see Section 4D.27).
    4. Shall not be displayed to an approach from which drivers are turning left permissively or making a U-turn to the left permissively unless one of the following conditions exists:
      1. A steady CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication is also simultaneously being displayed to the opposing approach;
      2. An engineering study has determined that, because of unique intersection conditions, the condition described in Item (a) cannot reasonably be implemented without causing significant operational or safety problems and that the volume of impacted left-turning or U-turning traffic is relatively low, and those left-turning or U-turning drivers are advised that a steady CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication is not simultaneously being displayed to the opposing traffic if this operation occurs continuously by the installation near the left-most signal head of a W25-1 sign (see Section 2C.48) with the legend ONCOMING TRAFFIC HAS EXTENDED GREEN; or
      3. Drivers are advised of the operation if it occurs only occasionally, such as during a preemption sequence, by the installation near the left-most signal head of a W25-2 sign (see Section 2C.48) with the legend ONCOMING TRAFFIC MAY HAVE EXTENDED GREEN.
  3. A steady CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication shall be displayed only when it is intended to permit traffic to proceed in any direction that is lawful and practical.
  4. A steady RED ARROW signal indication shall be displayed when it is intended to prohibit traffic, except pedestrians directed by a pedestrian signal head, from entering the intersection or other controlled area to make the indicated turn. Except as described in Item C.2 in Paragraph 3 of Section 4D.04, turning on a steady RED ARROW signal indication shall not be permitted.
  5. A steady YELLOW ARROW signal indication:
    1. Shall be displayed in the same direction as a GREEN ARROW signal indication following a GREEN ARROW signal indication in the same signal face, unless:
      1. The GREEN ARROW signal indication and a CIRCULAR GREEN (or straight-through GREEN ARROW) signal indication terminate simultaneously in the same signal face, or
      2. The green arrow is a straight-through GREEN ARROW (see Item B.1).
    2. Shall be displayed in the same direction as a flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indication or flashing RED ARROW signal indication following a flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indication or flashing RED ARROW signal indication in the same signal face, when the flashing arrow indication is displayed as part of a steady mode operation, if the signal face will subsequently display a steady red signal indication.
    3. Shall not be displayed in conjunction with the change from a steady RED ARROW, flashing RED ARROW, or flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indication to a GREEN ARROW signal indication, except when entering preemption operation as provided in Item 5(a).
    4. Shall not be displayed when any conflicting vehicular movement has a green or yellow signal indication (except for the situation regarding U-turns to the left provided in Paragraph 4) or any conflicting pedestrian movement has a WALKING PERSON (symbolizing WALK) or flashing UPRAISED HAND (symbolizing DONT WALK) signal indication, except that a steady left-turn (or U-turn to the left) YELLOW ARROW signal indication used to terminate a flashing left-turn (or U-turn to the left) YELLOW ARROW or a flashing left-turn (or U-turn to the left) RED ARROW signal indication in a signal face controlling a permissive left-turn (or U-turn to the left) movement as described in Sections 4D.18 and 4D.20 shall be permitted to be displayed when a CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication is displayed for the opposing through movement. Vehicles departing in the same direction shall not be considered in conflict if, for each turn lane with moving traffic, there is a separate departing lane, and pavement markings or raised channelization clearly indicate which departure lane to use.
    5. Shall not be displayed to terminate a flashing arrow signal indication on an approach from which drivers are turning left permissively or making a U-turn to the left permissively unless one of the following conditions exists:
      1. A steady CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication is also simultaneously being displayed to the opposing approach;
      2. An engineering study has determined that, because of unique intersection conditions, the condition described in Item (a) cannot reasonably be implemented without causing significant operational or safety problems and that the volume of impacted left-turning or U-turning traffic is relatively low, and those left-turning or U-turning drivers are advised that a steady CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication is not simultaneously being displayed to the opposing traffic if this operation occurs continuously by the installation near the left-most signal head of a W25-1 sign (see Section 2C.48) with the legend ONCOMING TRAFFIC HAS EXTENDED GREEN; or
      3. Drivers are advised of the operation if it occurs only occasionally, such as during a preemption sequence, by the installation near the left-most signal head of a W25-2 sign (see Section 2C.48) with the legend ONCOMING TRAFFIC MAY HAVE EXTENDED GREEN.
    6. Shall be terminated by a RED ARROW signal indication for the same direction or a CIRCULAR RED signal indication except:
      1. When entering preemption operation, the display of a GREEN ARROW signal indication or a flashing arrow signal indication shall be permitted following a steady YELLOW ARROW signal indication.
      2. When the movement controlled by the arrow is to continue on a permissive mode basis during an immediately following CIRCULAR GREEN or flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indication.
  6. A steady GREEN ARROW signal indication:
    1. Shall be displayed only to allow vehicular movements, in the direction indicated, that are not in conflict with other vehicles moving on a green or yellow signal indication and are not in conflict with pedestrians crossing in compliance with a WALKING PERSON (symbolizing WALK) or flashing UPRAISED HAND (symbolizing DONT WALK) signal indication. Vehicles departing in the same direction shall not be considered in conflict if, for each turn lane with moving traffic, there is a separate departing lane, and pavement markings or raised channelization clearly indicate which departure lane to use.
    2. Shall be displayed on a signal face that controls a left-turn movement when said movement is not in conflict with other vehicles moving on a green or yellow signal indication (except for the situation regarding U-turns provided in Paragraph 4) and is not in conflict with pedestrians crossing in compliance with a WALKING PERSON (symbolizing WALK) or flashing UPRAISED HAND (symbolizing DONT WALK) signal indication. Vehicles departing in the same direction shall not be considered in conflict if, for each turn lane with moving traffic, there is a separate departing lane, and pavement markings or raised channelization clearly indicate which departure lane to use.
    3. Shall not be required on the stem of a T-intersection or for turns from a one-way street.

Option:
04 If U-turns are permitted from the approach and a right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication is simultaneously being displayed to road users making a right turn from the conflicting approach to the left, road users making a U-turn may be advised of the operation by the installation near the left-turn signal face of a U-TURN YIELD TO RIGHT TURN (R10-16) sign (see Section 2B.53).

05 If not otherwise prohibited, a steady straight-through green arrow signal indication may be used instead of a circular green signal indication in a signal face on an approach intersecting a one-way street to discourage wrong-way turns.

06 If not otherwise prohibited, steady red, yellow, and green turn arrow signal indications may be used instead of steady circular red, yellow, and green signal indications in a signal face on an approach where all traffic is required to turn or where the straight-through movement is not physically possible.

Support:
07 Section 4D.25 contains information regarding the signalization of approaches that have a shared left-turn/right-turn lane and no through movement.

Standard:
08 If supplemental signal faces are used, the following limitations shall apply:

  1. Left-turn arrows and U-turn arrows to the left shall not be used in near-right signal faces.
  2. Right-turn arrows and U-turn arrows to the right shall not be used in far-left signal faces. A far-side median-mounted signal face shall be considered a far-left signal for this application.

09 A straight-through RED ARROW signal indication or a straight-through YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall not be displayed on any signal face, either alone or in combination with any other signal indication.

10 The following combinations of signal indications shall not be simultaneously displayed on any one signal face:

  1. CIRCULAR RED with CIRCULAR YELLOW;
  2. CIRCULAR GREEN with CIRCULAR RED; or
  3. Straight-through GREEN ARROW with CIRCULAR RED;

11 Additionally, the above combinations shall not be simultaneously displayed on an approach as a result of the combination of displays from multiple signal faces unless the display is created by a signal face(s) devoted exclusively to the control of a right-turning movement and:

  1. The signal face(s) controlling the right-turning movement is visibility-limited from the adjacent through movement or positioned to minimize potential confusion to approaching road users, or
  2. A RIGHT TURN SIGNAL (R10-10) sign (see Sections 4D.21 through 4D.24) is mounted adjacent to the signal face(s) controlling the right-turning movement.

12 The following combinations of signal indications shall not be simultaneously displayed on any one signal face or as a result of the combination of displays from multiple signal faces on an approach:

  1. CIRCULAR GREEN with CIRCULAR YELLOW;
  2. Straight-through GREEN ARROW with CIRCULAR YELLOW;
  3. GREEN ARROW with YELLOW ARROW pointing in the same direction;
  4. RED ARROW with YELLOW ARROW pointing in the same direction; or
  5. GREEN ARROW with RED ARROW pointing in the same direction.

13 Except as otherwise provided in Sections 4F.03 and 4G.04, the same signal section shall not be used to display both a flashing yellow and a steady yellow indication during steady mode operation. Except as otherwise provided in Sections 4D.18, 4D.20, 4D.22, and 4D.24, the same signal section shall not be used to display both a flashing red and a steady red indication during steady mode operation.

Guidance:
14 No movement that creates an unexpected crossing of pathways of moving vehicles or pedestrians should be allowed during any green or yellow interval, except when all three of the following conditions are met:

  1. The movement involves only slight conflict, and
  2. Serious traffic delays are substantially reduced by permitting the conflicting movement, and
  3. Drivers and pedestrians subjected to the unexpected conflict are effectively warned thereof by a sign.

Section 4D.06 Signal Indications – Design, Illumination, Color, and Shape

Standard:
01 Each signal indication, except those used for pedestrian signal heads and lane-use control signals, shall be circular or arrow.

02 Letters or numbers (including those associated with countdown displays) shall not be displayed as part of a vehicular signal indication.

03 Strobes shall not be used within or adjacent to any signal indication.

04 Except for the flashing signal indications and the pre-emption confirmation lights that are expressly allowed by the provisions of this Chapter, flashing displays shall not be used within or adjacent to any signal indications.

05 Each circular signal indication shall emit a single color: red, yellow, or green.

06 Each arrow signal indication shall emit a single color: red, yellow, or green except that the alternate display (dual-arrow signal section) of a GREEN ARROW and a YELLOW ARROW signal indication, both pointing in the same direction, shall be permitted, provided that they are not displayed simultaneously.

07 The arrow, which shall show only one direction, shall be the only illuminated part of an arrow signal indication.

08 Arrows shall be pointed:

  1. Vertically upward to indicate a straight-through movement, or
  2. Horizontally in the direction of the turn to indicate a turn at approximately or greater than a right angle, or
  3. Upward with a slope at an angle approximately equal to that of the turn if the angle of the turn is substantially less than a right angle, or
  4. In a manner that directs the driver through the turn if a U-turn arrow is used (see Figure 4D-1).

Figure 4D-1 Example of U-Turn Signal Face

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-1

09 Except as provided in Paragraph 10, the requirements of the publication entitled "Vehicle Traffic Control Signal Heads" (see Section 1A.11) that pertain to the aspects of the signal head design that affect the display of the signal indications shall be met.

Guidance:
10 The intensity and distribution of light from each illuminated signal lens should comply with the publications entitled "Vehicle Traffic Control Signal Heads" and "Traffic Signal Lamps" (see Section 1A.11).

Standard:
11 References to signal lenses in this section shall not be used to limit signal optical units to incandescent lamps within optical assemblies that include lenses.

Support:
12 Research has resulted in signal optical units that are not lenses, such as, but not limited to, light emitting diode (LED) traffic signal modules. Some units are practical for all signal indications, and some are practical for specific types such as visibility-limited signal indications.

Guidance:
13 If a signal indication is so bright that it causes excessive glare during nighttime conditions, some form of automatic dimming should be used to reduce the brilliance of the signal indication.

Section 4D.07 Size of Vehicular Signal Indications

Standard:
01 There shall be two nominal diameter sizes for vehicular signal indications: 8 inches and 12 inches.

02 Except as provided in Paragraph 3 below, 12-inch signal indications shall be used for all signal sections in all new signal faces.

Option:
03 Eight-inch circular signal indications may be used in new signal faces only for:

  1. The green or flashing yellow signal indications in an emergency-vehicle traffic control signal (see Section 4G.02);
  2. The circular indications in signal faces controlling the approach to the downstream location where two adjacent signalized locations are close to each other and it is not practical because of factors such as high approach speeds, horizontal or vertical curves, or other geometric factors to install visibility-limited signal faces for the downstream approach;
  3. The circular indications in a signal face that is located less than 120 feet from the stop line on a roadway with a posted or statutory speed limit of 30 mph or less;
  4. The circular indications in a supplemental near-side signal face:
  5. The circular indications in a supplemental signal face installed for the sole purpose of controlling pedestrian movements (see Section 4D.03) rather than vehicular movements; and
  6. The circular indications in a signal face installed for the sole purpose of controlling a bikeway or a bicycle movement.

04 Existing 8-inch circular signal indications that are not included in Items A through F in Paragraph 3 may be retained for the remainder of their useful service life.

Section 4D.08 Positions of Signal Indications Within a Signal Face – General

Support:
01 Standardization of the number and arrangements of signal sections in vehicular traffic control signal faces enables road users who are color vision deficient to identify the illuminated color by its position relative to other signal sections.

Standard:
02 Unless otherwise provided in this Manual for a particular application, each signal face at a signalized location shall have three, four, or five signal sections. Unless otherwise provided in this Manual for a particular application, if a vertical signal face includes a cluster (see Section 4D.09), the signal face shall have at least three vertical positions.

03 A single-section signal face shall be permitted at a traffic control signal if it consists of a continuously-displayed GREEN ARROW signal indication that is being used to indicate a continuous movement.

04 The signal sections in a signal face shall be arranged in a vertical or horizontal straight line, except as otherwise provided in Section 4D.09.

05 The arrangement of adjacent signal sections in a signal face shall follow the relative positions listed in Sections 4D.09 or 4D.10, as applicable.

06 If a signal section that displays a CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication is used, it shall be located between the signal section that displays the red signal indication and all other signal sections.

07 If a U-turn arrow signal section is used in a signal face for a U-turn to the left, its position in the signal face shall be the same as stated in Sections 4D.09 and 4D.10 for a left-turn arrow signal section of the same color. If a U-turn arrow signal section is used in a signal face for a U-turn to the right, its position in the signal face shall be the same as stated in Sections 4D.09 and 4D.10 for a right-turn arrow signal section of the same color.

08 A U-turn arrow signal indication pointing to the left shall not be used in a signal face that also contains a left-turn arrow signal indication. A U-turn arrow signal indication pointing to the right shall not be used in a signal face that also contains a right-turn arrow signal indication.

Option:
09 Within a signal face, two identical CIRCULAR RED or RED ARROW signal indications may be displayed immediately horizontally adjacent to each other in a vertical or horizontal signal face (see Figure 4D-2) for emphasis.

Figure 4D-2 Typical Arrangements of Signal Sections in Signal Faces That Do Not Control Turning Movements

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-2

10 Horizontally-arranged and vertically-arranged signal faces may be used on the same approach provided they are separated to meet the lateral separation spacing required in Section 4D.13.

Support:
11 Figure 4D-2 illustrates some of the typical arrangements of signal sections in signal faces that do not control separate turning movements. Figures 4D-6 through 4D-12 illustrate the typical arrangements of signal sections in left-turn signal faces. Figures 4D-13 through 4D-19 illustrate the typical arrangements of signal sections in right-turn signal faces.

Section 4D.09 Positions of Signal Indications Within a Vertical Signal Face

Standard:
01 In each vertically-arranged signal face, all signal sections that display red signal indications shall be located above all signal sections that display yellow and green signal indications.

02 In vertically-arranged signal faces, each signal section that displays a YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be located above the signal section that displays the GREEN ARROW signal indication to which it applies.

03 The relative positions of signal sections in a vertically-arranged signal face, from top to bottom, shall be as follows:

  • CIRCULAR RED
  • Steady and/or flashing left-turn RED ARROW
  • Steady and/or flashing right-turn RED ARROW
  • CIRCULAR YELLOW
  • CIRCULAR GREEN
  • Straight-through GREEN ARROW
  • Steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW
  • Flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW
  • Left-turn GREEN ARROW
  • Steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW
  • Flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW
  • Right-turn GREEN ARROW

04 If a dual-arrow signal section (capable of alternating between the display of a GREEN ARROW and a YELLOW ARROW signal indication) is used in a vertically-arranged signal face, the dual-arrow signal section shall occupy the same position relative to the other sections as the signal section that displays the GREEN ARROW signal indication in a vertically-arranged signal face would occupy.

Option:
05 In a vertically-arranged signal face, signal sections that display signal indications of the same color may be arranged horizontally adjacent to each other at right angles to the basic straight line arrangement to form a clustered signal face (see Figures 4D-2, 4D-9, 4D-11, 4D-16, and 4D-18).

Standard:
06 Such clusters shall be limited to the following:

  1. Two identical signal sections,
  2. Two or three different signal sections that display signal indications of the same color, or
  3. For only the specific case described in Section 4D.25 (see Drawing B of Figure 4D-20), two signal sections, one of which displays a GREEN ARROW signal indication and the other of which displays a flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indication.

07 The signal section that displays a flashing yellow signal indication during steady mode operation:

  1. Shall not be placed in the same vertical position as the signal section that displays a steady yellow signal indication, and
  2. Shall be placed below the signal section that displays a steady yellow signal indication.

Support:
08 Sections 4F.02 and 4G.04 contain exceptions to the provisions of this Section that are applicable to hybrid beacons.

Section 4D.10 Positions of Signal Indications Within a Horizontal Signal Face

Standard:
01 In each horizontally-arranged signal face, all signal sections that display red signal indications shall be located to the left of all signal sections that display yellow and green signal indications.

02 In horizontally-arranged signal faces, each signal section that displays a YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be located to the left of the signal section that displays the GREEN ARROW signal indication to which it applies.

03 The relative positions of signal sections in a horizontally-arranged signal face, from left to right, shall be as follows:

  • CIRCULAR RED
  • Steady and/or flashing left-turn RED ARROW
  • Steady and/or flashing right-turn RED ARROW
  • CIRCULAR YELLOW
  • Steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW
  • Flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW
  • Left-turn GREEN ARROW
  • CIRCULAR GREEN
  • Straight-through GREEN ARROW
  • Steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW
  • Flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW
  • Right-turn GREEN ARROW

04 If a dual-arrow signal section (capable of alternating between the display of a GREEN ARROW and a YELLOW ARROW signal indication) is used in a horizontally-arranged signal face, the signal section that displays the dual left-turn arrow signal indication shall be located immediately to the right of the signal section that displays the CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication, the signal section that displays the straight-through GREEN ARROW signal indication shall be located immediately to the right of the signal section that displays the CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication, and the signal section that displays the dual right-turn arrow signal indication shall be located to the right of all other signal sections.

05 The signal section that displays a flashing yellow signal indication during steady mode operation:

  1. Shall not be placed in the same horizontal position as the signal section that displays a steady yellow signal indication, and
  2. Shall be placed to the right of the signal section that displays a steady yellow signal indication.

Section 4D.11 Number of Signal Faces on an Approach

Standard:
01 The signal faces for each approach to an intersection or a midblock location shall be provided as follows:

  1. If a signalized through movement exists on an approach, a minimum of two primary signal faces shall be provided for the through movement. If a signalized through movement does not exist on an approach, a minimum of two primary signal faces shall be provided for the signalized turning movement that is considered to be the major movement from the approach (also see Section 4D.25).
  2. See Sections 4D.17 through 4D.20 for left-turn (and U-turn to the left) signal faces.
  3. See Sections 4D.21 through 4D.24 for right-turn (and U-turn to the right) signal faces.

Option:
02 Where a movement (or a certain lane or lanes) at the intersection never conflicts with any other signalized vehicular or pedestrian movement, a continuously-displayed single-section GREEN ARROW signal indication may be used to inform road users that the movement is free-flow and does not need to stop.

Support:
03 In some circumstances where the through movement never conflicts with any other signalized vehicular or pedestrian movement at the intersection, such as at T-intersections with appropriate geometrics and/or pavement markings and signing, an engineering study might determine that the through movement (or certain lanes of the through movement) can be free-flow and not signalized.

Guidance:
04 If two or more left-turn lanes are provided for a separately controlled protected only mode left-turn movement, or if a left-turn movement represents the major movement from an approach, two or more primary left-turn signal faces should be provided.

05 If two or more right-turn lanes are provided for a separately controlled right-turn movement, or if a right-turn movement represents the major movement from an approach, two or more primary right-turn signal faces should be provided.

Support:
06 Locating primary signal faces overhead on the far side of the intersection has been shown to provide safer operation by reducing intersection entries late in the yellow interval and by reducing red signal violations, as compared to post-mounting signal faces at the roadside or locating signal faces overhead within the intersection on a diagonally-oriented mast arm or span wire. On approaches with two or more lanes for the through movement, one signal face per through lane, centered over each through lane, has also been shown to provide safer operation.

Guidance:
07 If the posted or statutory speed limit or the 85th-percentile speed on an approach to a signalized location is 45 mph or higher, signal faces should be provided as follows for all new or reconstructed signal installations (see Figure 4D-3):

  1. The minimum number and location of primary (non-supplemental) signal faces for through traffic should be provided in accordance with Table 4D-1.
  2. If the number of overhead primary signal faces for through traffic is equal to the number of through lanes on an approach, one overhead signal face should be located approximately over the center of each through lane.
  3. Except for shared left-turn and right-turn signal faces, any primary signal face required by Sections 4D.17 through 4D.25 for an exclusive turn lane should be located overhead approximately over the center of each exclusive turn lane.
  4. All primary signal faces should be located on the far side of the intersection.
  5. In addition to the primary signal faces, one or more supplemental pole-mounted or overhead signal faces should be considered to provide added visibility for approaching traffic that is traveling behind large vehicles.
  6. All signal faces should have backplates.

Table 4D-1. Recommended Minimum Number of Primary Signal Faces for Through Traffic on Approaches with Posted, Statutory, or 85th-Percentile Speed of 45 mph or Higher
Number of Through Lanes
on Approach
Total Number of Primary Through
Signal Faces for Approach*
Minimum Number of Overhead-Mounted Primary
Through Signal Faces for Approach
1 2 1
2 2 1
3 3 2**
4 or more 4 or more 3**

Notes:

* A minimum of 2 through signal faces is always required (see Section 4D.11). These recommended numbers of through signal faces may be exceeded. Also, see cone of vision requirements otherwise indicated in Section 4D.13.

** If practical, all of the recommended number of primary through signal faces should be located overhead.

Figure 4D-3 Recommended Vehicular Signal Faces for Approaches with Posted, Statutory, or 85th Percentile Speed of 45 mph or Higher

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-3

08 This layout of signal faces should also be considered for any major urban or suburban arterial street with four or more lanes and for other approaches with speeds of less than 45 mph.

Section 4D.12 Visibility, Aiming, and Shielding of Signal Faces

Standard:
01 The primary consideration in signal face placement, aiming, and adjustment shall be to optimize the visibility of signal indications to approaching traffic.

02 Road users approaching a signalized intersection or other signalized area, such as a midblock crosswalk, shall be given a clear and unmistakable indication of their right-of-way assignment.

03 The geometry of each intersection to be signalized, including vertical grades, horizontal curves, and obstructions as well as the lateral and vertical angles of sight toward a signal face, as determined by typical driver-eye position, shall be considered in determining the vertical, longitudinal, and lateral position of the signal face.

Guidance:
04 The two primary signal faces required as a minimum for each approach should be continuously visible to traffic approaching the traffic control signal, from a point at least the minimum sight distance provided in Table 4D-2 in advance of and measured to the stop line. This range of continuous visibility should be provided unless precluded by a physical obstruction or unless another signalized location is within this range.

Table 4D-2. Minimum Sight Distance for Signal Visibility
85th-Percentile Speed Minimum Sight Distance
20 mph 175 feet
25 mph 215 feet
30 mph 270 feet
35 mph 325 feet
40 mph 390 feet
45 mph 460 feet
50 mph 540 feet
55 mph 625 feet
60 mph 715 feet

Note: Distances in this table are derived from stopping sight distance plus an assumed queue length for shorter cycle lengths (60 to 75 seconds).

05 There should be legal authority to prohibit the display of any unauthorized sign, signal, marking, or device that interferes with the effectiveness of any official traffic control device (see Section 11-205 of the "Uniform Vehicle Code").

06 At signalized midblock crosswalks, at least one of the signal faces should be over the traveled way for each approach.

Standard:
07 If approaching traffic does not have a continuous view of at least two signal faces for at least the minimum sight distance shown in Table 4D-2, a sign (see Section 2C.36) shall be installed to warn approaching traffic of the traffic control signal.

Option:
08 If a sign is installed to warn approaching road users of the traffic control signal, the sign may be supplemented by a Warning Beacon (see Section 4L.03).

09 A Warning Beacon used in this manner may be interconnected with the traffic signal controller assembly in such a manner as to flash yellow during the period when road users passing this beacon at the legal speed for the roadway might encounter a red signal indication (or a queue resulting from the display of the red signal indication) upon arrival at the signalized location.

10 If the sight distance to the signal faces for an approach is limited by horizontal or vertical alignment, supplemental signal faces aimed at a point on the approach at which the signal indications first become visible may be used.

Guidance:
11 Supplemental signal faces should be used if engineering judgment has shown that they are needed to achieve intersection visibility both in advance and immediately before the signalized location.

12 If supplemental signal faces are used, they should be located to provide optimum visibility for the movement to be controlled.

Standard:
13 In cases where irregular street design necessitates placing signal faces for different street approaches with a comparatively small angle between their respective signal indications, each signal indication shall, to the extent practical, be visibility-limited by signal visors, signal louvers, or other means so that an approaching road user's view of the signal indication(s) controlling movements on other approaches is minimized.

14 Signal visors exceeding 12 inches in length shall not be used on free-swinging signal faces.

Guidance:
15 Signal visors should be used on signal faces to aid in directing the signal indication specifically to approaching traffic, as well as to reduce "sun phantom," which can result when external light enters the lens.

16 The use of signal visors, or the use of signal faces or devices that direct the light without a reduction in intensity, should be considered as an alternative to signal louvers because of the reduction in light output caused by signal louvers.

Option:
17 Special signal faces, such as visibility-limited signal faces, may be used such that the road user does not see signal indications intended for other approaches before seeing the signal indications for their own approach, if simultaneous viewing of both signal indications could cause the road user to be misdirected.

Guidance:
18 If the posted or statutory speed limit or the 85th-percentile speed on an approach to a signalized location is 45 mph or higher, signal backplates should be used on all of the signal faces that face the approach. Signal backplates should also be considered for use on signal faces on approaches with posted or statutory speed limits or 85th-percentile speeds of less than 45 mph where sun glare, bright sky, and/or complex or confusing backgrounds indicate a need for enhanced signal face target value.

Support:
19 The use of backplates enhances the contrast between the traffic signal indications and their surroundings for both day and night conditions, which is also helpful to older drivers.

Standard:
20 The inside of signal visors (hoods), the entire surface of louvers and fins, and the front surface of backplates shall have a dull black finish to minimize light reflection and to increase contrast between the signal indication and its background.

Option:
21 A yellow retroreflective strip with a minimum width of 1 inch and a maximum width of 3 inches may be placed along the perimeter of the face of a signal backplate to project a rectangular appearance at night.

Section 4D.13 Lateral Positioning of Signal Faces

Standard:
01 At least one and preferably both of the minimum of two primary signal faces required for the through movement (or the major turning movement if there is no through movement) on the approach shall be located between two lines intersecting with the center of the approach at a point 10 feet behind the stop line, one making an angle of approximately 20 degrees to the right of the center of the approach extended, and the other making an angle of approximately 20 degrees to the left of the center of the approach extended. The signal face that satisfies this requirement shall simultaneously satisfy the longitudinal placement requirement described in Section 4D.14 (see Figure 4D-4).

Figure 4D-4 Lateral and Longitudinal Location of Primary Signal Faces

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-4

02 If both of the minimum of two primary signal faces required for the through movement (or the major turning movement if there is no through movement) on the approach are post-mounted, they shall both be on the far side of the intersection, one on the right and one on the left of the approach lane(s).

03 The required signal faces for through traffic on an approach shall be located not less than 8 feet apart measured horizontally perpendicular to the approach between the centers of the signal faces.

04 If more than one separate turn signal face is provided for a turning movement and if one or both of the separate turn signal faces are located over the roadway, the signal faces shall be located not less than 8 feet apart measured horizontally perpendicular to the approach between the centers of the signal faces.

Guidance:
05 If a signal face controls a specific lane or lanes of an approach, its position should make it readily visible to road users making that movement.

Support:
06 Section 4D.11 contains additional provisions regarding lateral positioning of signal faces for approaches having a posted or statutory speed limit or an 85th-percentile speed of 45 mph or higher.

Standard:
07 If an exclusive left-turn, right-turn, or U-turn lane is present on an approach and if a primary separate turn signal face controlling that lane is mounted over the roadway, the primary separate turn signal face shall not be positioned any further to the right than the extension of the right-hand edge of the exclusive turn lane or any further to the left than the extension of the left-hand edge of the exclusive turn lane.

08 Supplemental turn signal faces mounted over the roadway shall not be subject to the positioning requirements in the previous paragraph.

Guidance:
09 For new or reconstructed signal installations, on an approach with an exclusive turn lane(s) for a left-turn (or U-turn to the left) movement and with opposing vehicular traffic, signal faces that display a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication should not be post-mounted on the far-side median or mounted overhead above the exclusive turn lane(s) or the extension of the lane(s).

Standard:
10 If supplemental post-mounted signal faces are used, the following limitations shall apply:

  1. Left-turn arrows and U-turn arrows to the left shall not be used in near-right signal faces.
  2. Right-turn arrows and U-turn arrows to the right shall not be used in far-left signal faces. A far-side median-mounted signal face shall be considered a far-left signal for this application.

Section 4D.14 Longitudinal Positioning of Signal Faces

Standard:
01 Except where the width of an intersecting roadway or other conditions make it physically impractical, the signal faces for each approach to an intersection or a midblock location shall be provided as follows:

  1. A signal face installed to satisfy the requirements for primary left-turn signal faces (see Sections 4D.17 through 4D.20) and primary right-turn signal faces (see Sections 4D.21 through 4D.24), and at least one and preferably both of the minimum of two primary signal faces required for the through movement (or the major turning movement if there is no through movement) on the approach shall be located:
    1. No less than 40 feet beyond the stop line,
    2. No more than 180 feet beyond the stop line unless a supplemental near-side signal face is provided, and
    3. As near as practical to the line of the driver's normal view, if mounted over the roadway.

The primary signal face that satisfies this requirement shall simultaneously satisfy the lateral placement requirement described in Section 4D.13 (see Figure 4D-4).

  1. Where the nearest signal face is located between 150 and 180 feet beyond the stop line, engineering judgment of the conditions, including the worst-case visibility conditions, shall be used to determine if the provision of a supplemental near-side signal face would be beneficial.

Support:
02 Section 4D.11 contains additional provisions regarding longitudinal positioning of signal faces for approaches having a posted or 85th-percentile speed of 45 mph or higher.

Guidance:
03 Supplemental near-side signal faces should be located as near as practical to the stop line.

Section 4D.15 Mounting Height of Signal Faces

Standard:
01 The top of the signal housing of a vehicular signal face located over any portion of a highway that can be used by motor vehicles shall not be more than 25.6 feet above the pavement.

02 For viewing distances between 40 and 53 feet from the stop line, the maximum mounting height to the top of the signal housing shall be as shown in Figure 4D-5.

Figure 4D-5 Maximum Mounting Height of Signal Faces Located Between 40 Feet and 53 Feet from Stop Line

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-5

03 The bottom of the signal housing and any related attachments to a vehicular signal face located over any portion of a highway that can be used by motor vehicles shall be at least 15 feet above the pavement.

04 The bottom of the signal housing (including brackets) of a vehicular signal face that is vertically arranged and not located over a roadway:

  1. Shall be a minimum of 8 feet and a maximum of 19 feet above the sidewalk or, if there is no sidewalk, above the pavement grade at the center of the roadway.
  2. Shall be a minimum of 4.5 feet and a maximum of 19 feet above the median island grade of a center median island if located on the near side of the intersection.

05 The bottom of the signal housing (including brackets) of a vehicular signal face that is horizontally arranged and not located over a roadway:

  1. Shall be a minimum of 8 feet and a maximum of 22 feet above the sidewalk or, if there is no sidewalk, above the pavement grade at the center of the roadway.
  2. Shall be a minimum of 4.5 feet and a maximum of 22 feet above the median island grade of a center median island if located on the near side of the intersection.

Section 4D.16 Lateral Offset (Clearance) of Signal Faces

Standard:
01 Signal faces mounted at the side of a roadway with curbs at less than 15 feet from the bottom of the housing and any related attachments shall have a horizontal offset of not less than 2 feet from the face of a vertical curb, or if there is no curb, not less than 2 feet from the edge of a shoulder.

Section 4D.17 Signal Indications for Left-Turn Movements – General

Standard:
01 In Sections 4D.17 through 4D.20, provisions applicable to left-turn movements and left-turn lanes shall also apply to signal indications for U-turns to the left that are provided at locations where left turns are prohibited or not geometrically possible.

Support:
02 Left-turning traffic is controlled by one of four modes as follows:

  1. Permissive Only Mode—turns made on a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication, a flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication, or a flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication after yielding to pedestrians, if any, and/or opposing traffic, if any.
  2. Protected Only Mode—turns made only when a left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication is displayed.
  3. Protected/Permissive Mode—both modes can occur on an approach during the same cycle.
  4. Variable Left-Turn Mode—the operating mode changes among the protected only mode and/or the protected/permissive mode and/or the permissive only mode during different periods of the day or as traffic conditions change.

Option:
03 In areas having a high percentage of older drivers, special consideration may be given to the use of protected only mode left-turn phasing, when appropriate.

Standard:
04 During a permissive left-turn movement, the signal faces for through traffic on the opposing approach shall simultaneously display green or steady yellow signal indications. If pedestrians crossing the lane or lanes used by the permissive left-turn movement to depart the intersection are controlled by pedestrian signal heads, the signal indications displayed by those pedestrian signal heads shall not be limited to any particular display during the permissive left-turn movement.

05 During a protected left-turn movement, the signal faces for through traffic on the opposing approach shall simultaneously display steady CIRCULAR RED signal indications. If pedestrians crossing the lane or lanes used by the protected left-turn movement to depart the intersection are controlled by pedestrian signal heads, the pedestrian signal heads shall display a steady UPRAISED HAND (symbolizing DONT WALK) signal indication during the protected left-turn movement.

06 A protected only mode left-turn movement that does not begin and terminate at the same time as the adjacent through movement shall not be provided on an approach unless an exclusive left-turn lane exists.

07 A yellow change interval for the left-turn movement shall not be displayed when the status of the left-turn operation is changing from permissive to protected within any given signal sequence.

08 If the operating mode changes among the protected only mode and/or the protected/permissive mode and/or the permissive only mode during different periods of the day or as traffic conditions change, the requirements in Sections 4D.18 through 4D.20 that are appropriate to that mode of operation shall be met, subject to the following:

  1. The CIRCULAR GREEN and CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indications shall not be displayed when operating in the protected only mode.
  2. The left-turn GREEN ARROW and left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indications shall not be displayed when operating in the permissive only mode.

Option:
09 Additional static signs or changeable message signs may be used to meet the requirements for the variable left-turn mode or to inform drivers that left-turn green arrows will not be available during certain times of the day.

Support:
10 Sections 4D.17 through 4D.20 describe the use of the following two types of signal faces for controlling left-turn movements:

  1. Shared signal face – This type of signal face controls both the left-turn movement and the adjacent movement (usually the through movement) and can serve as one of the two required primary signal faces for the adjacent movement. A shared signal face always displays the same color of circular indication that is displayed by the signal face or faces for the adjacent movement. If a shared signal face that provides protected/permissive mode left turns is mounted overhead at the intersection, it is usually positioned over or slightly to the right of the extension of the lane line separating the left-turn lane from the adjacent lane.
  2. Separate left-turn signal face – This type of signal face controls only the left-turn movement and cannot serve as one of the two required primary signal faces for the adjacent movement (usually the through movement) because it displays signal indications that are applicable only to the left-turn movement. If a separate left-turn signal face is mounted overhead at the intersection, it is positioned over the extension of the left-turn lane. In a separate left-turn signal face, a flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication or a flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication is used to control permissive left-turning movements.

11 Section 4D.13 contains provisions regarding the lateral positioning of signal faces that control left-turn movements.

12 It is not necessary that the same mode of left-turn operation or same type of left-turn signal face be used on every approach to a signalized location. Selecting different modes and types of left-turn signal faces for the various approaches to the same signalized location is acceptable.

Option:
13 A signal face that is shared by left-turning and right-turning traffic may be provided for a shared left-turn/right-turn lane on an approach that has no through traffic (see Section 4D.25).

Section 4D.18 Signal Indications for Permissive Only Mode Left-Turn Movements

Standard:
01 If a shared signal face is provided for a permissive only mode left turn, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-6):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying the following signal indications: steady CIRCULAR RED, steady CIRCULAR YELLOW, and CIRCULAR GREEN. Only one of the three indications shall be displayed at any given time.
  2. During the permissive left-turn movement, a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication shall be displayed.
  3. A permissive only shared signal face, regardless of where it is positioned and regardless of how many adjacent through signal faces are provided, shall always simultaneously display the same color of circular indication that the adjacent through signal face or faces display.
  4. If the permissive only mode is not the only left-turn mode used for the approach, the signal face shall be the same shared signal face that is used for the protected/permissive mode (see Section 4D.20) except that the left-turn GREEN ARROW and left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indications shall not be displayed when operating in the permissive only mode.

Figure 4D-6 Typical Position and Arrangements of Shared Signal Faces for Permissive Only Mode Left Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-6

02 If a separate left-turn signal face is being operated in a permissive only left-turns mode, a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication shall not be used in that face.

03 If a separate left-turn signal face is being operated in a permissive only left-turn mode and a flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication is provided, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-7):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying the following signal indications: steady left-turn RED ARROW, steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW, and flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW. Only one of the three indications shall be displayed at any given time.
  2. During the permissive left-turn movement, a flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed.
  3. A steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication.
  4. It shall be permitted to display a flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication for a permissive left-turn movement while the signal faces for the adjacent through movement display steady CIRCULAR RED signal indications and the opposing left-turn signal faces display left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indications for a protected left-turn movement.
  5. During steady mode (stop-and-go) operation, the signal section that displays the steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication during change intervals shall not be used to display the flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication for permissive left turns.
  6. During flashing mode operation (see Section 4D.30), the display of a flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be only from the signal section that displays a steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication during steady mode (stop-and-go) operation.
  7. If the permissive only mode is not the only left-turn mode used for the approach, the signal face shall be the same separate left-turn signal face with a flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indication that is used for the protected/permissive mode (see Section 4D.20) except that the left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall not be displayed when operating in the permissive only mode.

Figure 4D-7 Typical Position and Arrangements of Separate Signal Faces with Flashing Yellow Arrow for Permissive Only Mode Left Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-7

Option:
04 A separate left-turn signal face with a flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication during the permissive left-turn movement may be used for unusual geometric conditions, such as wide medians with offset left-turn lanes, but only when an engineering study determines that each and every vehicle must successively come to a full stop before making a permissive left turn.

Standard:
05 If a separate left-turn signal face is being operated in a permissive only left-turn mode and a flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication is provided, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-8):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying the following signal indications: steady or flashing left-turn RED ARROW, steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW, and left-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of the three indications shall be displayed at any given time. The GREEN ARROW indication is required in order to provide a three-section signal face, but shall not be displayed during the permissive only mode.
  2. During the permissive left-turn movement, a flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication shall be displayed, thus indicating that each and every vehicle must successively come to a full stop before making a permissive left turn.
  3. A steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication.
  4. It shall be permitted to display a flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication for a permissive left-turn movement while the signal faces for the adjacent through movement display steady CIRCULAR RED signal indications and the opposing left-turn signal faces display left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indications for a protected left-turn movement.
  5. A supplementary sign shall not be required. If used, it shall be a LEFT TURN YIELD ON FLASHING RED ARROW AFTER STOP (R10-27) sign (see Figure 2B-27).

Figure 4D-8 Typical Position and Arrangements of Separate Signal Faces with Flashing Red Arrow for Permissive Only Mode and Protected/Permissive Mode Left Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-8

Option:
06 The requirements of Item A in Paragraph 5 may be met by a vertically-arranged signal face with a horizontal cluster of two left-turn RED ARROW signal indications, the left-most of which displays a steady indication and the right-most of which displays a flashing indication (see Figure 4D-8).

Section 4D.19 Signal Indications for Protected Only Mode Left-Turn Movements

Standard:
01 A shared signal face shall not be used for protected only mode left turns unless the CIRCULAR GREEN and left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indications always begin and terminate together. If a shared signal face is provided for a protected only mode left turn, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-9):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying the following signal indications: steady CIRCULAR RED, steady CIRCULAR YELLOW, CIRCULAR GREEN, and left-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of the three colors shall be displayed at any given time.
  2. During the protected left-turn movement, the shared signal face shall simultaneously display both a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication and a left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication.
  3. The shared signal face shall always simultaneously display the same color of circular indication that the adjacent through signal face or faces display.
  4. If the protected only mode is not the only left-turn mode used for the approach, the signal face shall be the same shared signal face that is used for the protected/permissive mode (see Section 4D.20).

Figure 4D-9 Typical Positions and Arrangements of Shared Signal Faces for Protected Only Mode Left Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-9

Option:
02 A straight-through GREEN ARROW signal indication may be used instead of the CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication in Items A and B in Paragraph 1 on an approach where right turns are prohibited and a straight-through GREEN ARROW signal indication is also used instead of a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication in the other signal face(s) for through traffic.

Standard:
03 If a separate left-turn signal face is provided for a protected only mode left turn, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-10):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying, the following signal indications: steady left-turn RED ARROW, steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW, and left-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of the three indications shall be displayed at any given time. A signal instruction sign shall not be required with this set of signal indications. If used, it shall be a LEFT ON GREEN ARROW ONLY (R10-5) sign (see Figure 2B-27).
  2. During the protected left-turn movement, a left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall be displayed.
  3. A steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication.
  4. If the protected only mode is not the only left-turn mode used for the approach, the signal face shall be the same separate left-turn signal face that is used for the protected/permissive mode (see Section 4D.20 and Figures 4D-8 and 4D-12) except that the flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW or flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication shall not be displayed when operating in the protected only mode.

Figure 4D-10 Typical Position and Arrangements of Separate Signal Faces for Protected Only Mode Left Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-10

Section 4D.20 Signal Indications for Protected/Permissive Mode Left-Turn Movements

Standard:
01 If a shared signal face is provided for a protected/permissive mode left turn, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-11):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying the following signal indications: steady CIRCULAR RED, steady CIRCULAR YELLOW, CIRCULAR green, steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW, and left-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of the three circular indications shall be displayed at any given time. Only one of the two arrow indications shall be displayed at any given time. If the left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication and the CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication(s) for the adjacent through movement are always terminated together, the steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall not be required.
  2. During the protected left-turn movement, the shared signal face shall simultaneously display a left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication and a circular signal indication that is the same color as the signal indication for the adjacent through lane on the same approach as the protected left turn.
  3. A steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication, unless the left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication and the CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication(s) for the adjacent through movement are being terminated together. When the left-turn GREEN ARROW and CIRCULAR GREEN signal indications are being terminated together, the required display following the left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall be either the display of a CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication alone or the simultaneous display of the CIRCULAR YELLOW and left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indications.
  4. During the permissive left-turn movement, the shared signal face shall display only a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication.
  5. A protected/permissive shared signal face, regardless of where it is positioned and regardless of how many adjacent through signal faces are provided, shall always simultaneously display the same color of circular indication that the adjacent through signal face or faces display.
  6. A supplementary sign shall not be required. If used, it shall be a LEFT TURN YIELD ON GREEN (symbolic circular green) (R10-12) sign (see Figure 2B-27).

Figure 4D-11 Typical Position and Arrangements of Shared Signal Faces for Protected/Permissive Mode Left Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-11

02 If a separate left-turn signal face is being operated in a protected/permissive left-turn mode, a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication shall not be used in that face.

03 If a separate left-turn signal face is being operated in a protected/permissive left-turn mode and a flashing left-turn yellow arrow signal indication is provided, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-12):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying the following signal indications: steady left-turn RED ARROW, steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW, flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW, and left-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of the four indications shall be displayed at any given time.
  2. During the protected left-turn movement, a left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall be displayed.
  3. A steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication.
  4. During the permissive left-turn movement, a flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed.
  5. A steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication if the permissive left-turn movement is being terminated and the separate left-turn signal face will subsequently display a steady left-turn RED ARROW indication.
  6. It shall be permitted to display a flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication for a permissive left-turn movement while the signal faces for the adjacent through movement display steady CIRCULAR RED signal indications and the opposing left-turn signal faces display left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indications for a protected left-turn movement.
  7. When a permissive left-turn movement is changing to a protected left-turn movement, a left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall be displayed immediately upon the termination of the flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication. A steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall not be displayed between the display of the flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication and the display of the steady left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication.
  8. The display shall be a four-section signal face except that a three-section signal face containing a dual-arrow signal section shall be permitted where signal head height limitations (or lateral positioning limitations for a horizontally-mounted signal face) will not permit the use of a four-section signal face. The dual-arrow signal section, where used, shall display a GREEN ARROW for the protected left-turn movement and a flashing YELLOW ARROW for the permissive left-turn movement.
  9. During steady mode (stop-and-go) operation, the signal section that displays the steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication during change intervals shall not be used to display the flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication for permissive left turns.
  10. During flashing mode operation (see Section 4D.30), the display of a flashing left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be only from the signal section that displays a steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication during steady mode (stop-and-go) operation.

Figure 4D-12 Typical Position and Arrangements of Separate Signal Faces with Flashing Yellow for Protected/Permissive Mode and Protected Only Mode Left Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-12

Option:
04 A separate left-turn signal face with a flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication during the permissive left-turn movement may be used for unusual geometric conditions, such as wide medians with offset left-turn lanes, but only when an engineering study determines that each and every vehicle must successively come to a full stop before making a permissive left turn.

Standard:
05 If a separate left-turn signal face is being operated in a protected/permissive left-turn mode and a flashing left-turn RED arrow signal indication is provided, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-8):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying the following signal indications: steady or flashing left-turn RED ARROW, steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW, and left-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of the three indications shall be displayed at any given time.
  2. During the protected left-turn movement, a left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall be displayed.
  3. A steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication.
  4. During the permissive left-turn movement, a flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication shall be displayed.
  5. A steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication if the permissive left-turn movement is being terminated and the separate left-turn signal face will subsequently display a steady left-turn RED ARROW indication.
  6. When a permissive left-turn movement is changing to a protected left-turn movement, a left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall be displayed immediately upon the termination of the flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication. A steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall not be displayed between the display of the flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication and the display of the steady left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication.
  7. It shall be permitted to display a flashing left-turn RED ARROW signal indication for a permissive left-turn movement while the signal faces for the adjacent through movement display steady CIRCULAR RED signal indications and the opposing left-turn signal faces display left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indications for a protected left-turn movement.
  8. A supplementary sign shall not be required. If used, it shall be a LEFT TURN YIELD ON FLASHING RED ARROW AFTER STOP (R10-27) sign (see Figure 2B-27).

Option:
06 The requirements of Item A in Paragraph 5 may be met by a vertically-arranged signal face with a horizontal cluster of two left-turn RED ARROW signal indications, the left-most of which displays a steady indication and the right-most of which displays a flashing indication (see Figure 4D-8).

Section 4D.21 Signal Indications for Right-Turn Movements – General

Standard:
01 In Sections 4D.21 through 4D.24, provisions applicable to right-turn movements and right-turn lanes shall also apply to signal indications for U-turns to the right that are provided at locations where right turns are prohibited or not geometrically possible.

Support:
02 Right-turning traffic is controlled by one of four modes as follows:

  1. Permissive Only Mode—turns made on a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication, a flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication, or a flashing right-turn RED ARROW signal indication after yielding to pedestrians, if any.
  2. Protected Only Mode—turns made only when a right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication is displayed.
  3. Protected/Permissive Mode—both modes occur on an approach during the same cycle.
  4. Variable Right-Turn Mode—the operating mode changes among the protected only mode and/or the protected/permissive mode and/or the permissive only mode during different periods of the day or as traffic conditions change.

Standard:
03 During a permissive right-turn movement, the signal faces, if any, that exclusively control U-turn traffic that conflicts with the permissive right-turn movement (see Item F.1 in Section 4D.05) shall simultaneously display steady U-turn RED ARROW signal indications. If pedestrians crossing the lane or lanes used by the permissive right-turn movement to depart the intersection are controlled by pedestrian signal heads, the signal indications displayed by those pedestrian signal heads shall not be limited to any particular display during the permissive right-turn movement.

04 During a protected right-turn movement, the signal faces for left-turn traffic, if any, on the opposing approach shall not simultaneously display a steady left-turn GREEN ARROW or steady left-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication, and signal faces, if any, that exclusively control U-turn traffic that conflicts with the protected right-turn movement (see Item F.1 in Section 4D.05) shall simultaneously display steady U-turn RED ARROW signal indications. If pedestrians crossing the lane or lanes used by the protected right-turn movement to depart the intersection are controlled by pedestrian signal heads, the pedestrian signal heads shall display a steady UPRAISED HAND (symbolizing DONT WALK) signal indication during the protected right-turn movement.

05 A protected only mode right-turn movement that does not begin and terminate at the same time as the adjacent through movement shall not be provided on an approach unless an exclusive right-turn lane exists.

06 A yellow change interval for the right-turn movement shall not be displayed when the status of the right-turn operation is changing from permissive to protected within any given signal sequence.

07 If the operating mode changes among the protected only mode and/or the protected/permissive mode and/or the permissive only mode during different periods of the day or as traffic conditions change, the requirements in Sections 4D.22 through 4D.24 that are appropriate to that mode of operation shall be met, subject to the following:

  1. The CIRCULAR GREEN and CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indications shall not be displayed when operating in the protected only mode.
  2. The right-turn GREEN ARROW and right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indications shall not be displayed when operating in the permissive only mode.

Option:
08 Additional static signs or changeable message signs may be used to meet the requirements for the variable right-turn mode or to inform drivers that right-turn green arrows will not be available during certain times of the day.

Support:
09 Sections 4D.21 through 4D.24 describe the use of the following two types of signal faces for controlling right-turn movements:

  1. Shared signal face – This type of signal face controls both the right-turn movement and the adjacent movement (usually the through movement) and can serve as one of the two required primary signal faces for the adjacent movement. A shared signal face always displays the same color of circular indication that is displayed by the signal face or faces for the adjacent movement.
  2. Separate right-turn signal face – This type of signal face controls only the right-turn movement and cannot serve as one of the two required primary signal faces for the adjacent movement (usually the through movement) because it displays signal indications that are applicable only to the right-turn movement. If a separate right-turn signal face is mounted overhead at the intersection, it is positioned over the extension of the right-turn lane. In a separate right-turn signal face, a flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication or a flashing right-turn RED ARROW signal indication is used to control permissive right-turning movements.

10 Section 4D.13 contains provisions regarding the lateral positioning of signal faces that control right-turn movements.

11 It is not necessary that the same mode of right-turn operation or same type of right-turn signal face be used on every approach to a signalized location. Selecting different modes and types of right-turn signal faces for the various approaches to the same signalized location is acceptable.

Option:
12 A signal face that is shared by left-turning and right-turning traffic may be provided for a shared left-turn/right-turn lane on an approach that has no through traffic (see Section 4D.25).

Section 4D.22 Signal Indications for Permissive Only Mode Right-Turn Movements

Standard:
01 If a shared signal face is provided for a permissive only mode right turn, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-13):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying the following signal indications: steady CIRCULAR RED, steady CIRCULAR YELLOW, and CIRCULAR GREEN. Only one of the three indications shall be displayed at any given time.
  2. During the permissive right-turn movement, a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication shall be displayed.
  3. A permissive only shared signal face, regardless of where it is positioned and regardless of how many adjacent through signal faces are provided, shall always simultaneously display the same color of circular indication that the adjacent through signal face or faces display.
  4. If the permissive only mode is not the only right-turn mode used for the approach, the signal face shall be the same shared signal face that is used for the protected/permissive mode (see Section 4D.24) except that the right-turn GREEN ARROW and right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indications shall not be displayed when operating in the permissive only mode.

Figure 4D-13 Typical Positions and Arrangements of Shared Signal Faces for Permissive Only Mode Right Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-13

02 If a separate right-turn signal face is being operated in a permissive only right-turn mode, a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication shall not be used in that face.

03 If a separate right-turn signal face is being operated in a permissive only right-turn mode and a flashing right-turn yellow arrow signal indication is provided, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-14):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying one of the following sets of signal indications:
    1. Steady right-turn RED ARROW, steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW, and flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW. Only one of the three indications shall be displayed at any given time.
    2. Steady CIRCULAR RED, steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW, and flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW. Only one of the three indications shall be displayed at any given time. If the CIRCULAR RED signal indication is sometimes displayed when the signal faces for the adjacent through lane(s) are not displaying a CIRCULAR RED signal indication, a RIGHT TURN SIGNAL (R10-10R) sign (see Figure 2B-27) shall be used unless the CIRCULAR RED signal indication in the separate right-turn signal face is shielded, hooded, louvered, positioned, or designed such that it is not readily visible to drivers in the through lane(s).
  2. During the permissive right-turn movement, a flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed.
  3. A steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication.
  4. When the separate right-turn signal face is providing a message to stop and remain stopped, a steady right-turn RED ARROW signal indication shall be displayed if it is intended that right turns on red not be permitted (except when a traffic control device is in place permitting a turn on a steady RED ARROW signal indication) or a steady CIRCULAR RED signal indication shall be displayed if it is intended that right turns on red be permitted.
  5. It shall be permitted to display a flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication for a permissive right-turn movement while the signal faces for the adjacent through movement display steady CIRCULAR RED signal indications.
  6. During steady mode (stop-and-go) operation, the signal section that displays the steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication during change intervals shall not be used to display the flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication for permissive right turns.
  7. During flashing mode operation (see Section 4D.30), the display of a flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be only from the signal section that displays a steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication during steady mode (stop-and-go) operation.
  8. If the permissive only mode is not the only right-turn mode used for the approach, the signal face shall be the same separate right-turn signal face with a flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indication that is used for the protected/permissive mode (see Section 4D.24) except that the right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall not be displayed when operating in the permissive only mode.

Figure 4D-14 Typical Position and Arrangements of Separate Signal Faces with Flashing Yellow Arrow for Permissive Only Mode Right Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-14

Option:
04 When an engineering study determines that each and every vehicle must successively come to a full stop before making a permissive right turn, a separate right-turn signal face with a flashing right-turn RED ARROW signal indication during the permissive right-turn movement may be used.

Standard:
05 If a separate right-turn signal face is being operated in a permissive only right-turn mode and a flashing right-turn RED arrow signal indication is provided, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-15):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying one of the following sets of signal indications:
    1. Steady or flashing right-turn RED ARROW, steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW, and right-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of the three indications shall be displayed at any given time. The GREEN ARROW indication is required in order to provide a three-section signal face, but shall not be displayed during permissive only mode.
    2. Steady CIRCULAR RED on the left and steady right-turn RED ARROW on the right of the top position, steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW in the middle position, and right-turn GREEN ARROW in the bottom position. Only one of the four indications shall be displayed at any given time. The GREEN ARROW indication is required in order to provide three vertical positions, but shall not be displayed during permissive only mode. If the CIRCULAR RED signal indication is sometimes displayed when the signal faces for the adjacent through lane(s) are not displaying a CIRCULAR RED signal indication, a RIGHT TURN SIGNAL (R10-10R) sign (see Figure 2B-27) shall be used unless the CIRCULAR RED signal indication in the separate right-turn signal face is shielded, hooded, louvered, positioned, or designed such that it is not readily visible to drivers in the through lane(s).
  2. During the permissive right-turn movement, a flashing right-turn RED ARROW signal indication shall be displayed, thus indicating that each and every vehicle must successively come to a full stop before making a permissive right turn.
  3. A steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the flashing right-turn RED ARROW signal indication.
  4. When the separate right-turn signal face is providing a message to stop and remain stopped, a steady right-turn RED ARROW signal indication shall be displayed if it is intended that right turns on red not be permitted (except when a traffic control device is in place permitting a turn on a steady RED ARROW signal indication) or a steady CIRCULAR RED signal indication shall be displayed if it is intended that right turns on red be permitted.
  5. The display of a flashing right-turn RED ARROW signal indication for a permissive right-turn movement while the signal faces for the adjacent through movement display steady CIRCULAR RED signal indications and the opposing left-turn signal faces display left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indications for a protected left-turn movement shall be permitted.
  6. A supplementary sign shall not be required. If used, it shall be a RIGHT TURN YIELD ON FLASHING RED ARROW AFTER STOP (R10-27) sign (see Figure 2B-27).

Figure 4D-15 Typical Position and Arrangements of Separate Signal Faces with Flashing Red Arrow for Permissive Only Mode and Protected/Permissive Mode Right Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-15

Option:
06 The requirements of Item A.1 in Paragraph 5 may be met by a vertically-arranged signal face with a horizontal cluster of two right-turn RED ARROW signal indications, the left-most of which displays a steady indication and the right-most of which displays a flashing indication (see Figure 4D-15).

Section 4D.23 Signal Indications for Protected Only Mode Right-Turn Movements

Standard:
01 A shared signal face shall not be used for protected only mode right turns unless the CIRCULAR GREEN and right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indications always begin and terminate together. If a shared signal face is provided for a protected only right turn, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-16):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying the following signal indications: steady CIRCULAR RED, steady CIRCULAR YELLOW, CIRCULAR GREEN, and right-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of the three colors shall be displayed at any given time.
  2. During the protected right-turn movement, the shared signal face shall simultaneously display both a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication and a right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication.
  3. The shared signal face shall always simultaneously display the same color of circular indication that the adjacent through signal face or faces display.
  4. If the protected only mode is not the only right-turn mode used for the approach, the signal face shall be the same shared signal face that is used for the protected/permissive mode (see Section 4D.24).

Figure 4D-16 Typical Positions and Arrangements of Shared Signal Faces for Protected Only Mode Right Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-16

Option:
02 A straight-through GREEN ARROW signal indication may be used instead of the CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication in Items A and B in Paragraph 1 on an approach where left turns are prohibited and a straight-through GREEN ARROW signal indication is also used instead of a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication in the other signal face(s) for through traffic.

Standard:
03 If a separate right-turn signal face is provided for a protected only mode right turn, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-17):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying one of the following sets of signal indications:
    1. Steady right-turn RED ARROW, steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW, and right-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of the three indications shall be displayed at any given time. A signal instruction sign shall not be required with this set of signal indications. If used, it shall be a RIGHT ON GREEN ARROW ONLY (R10-5a) sign (see Figure 2B-27).
    2. Steady CIRCULAR RED, steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW, and right-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of three indications shall be displayed at any given time. If the CIRCULAR RED signal indication is sometimes displayed when the signal faces for the adjacent through lane(s) are not displaying a CIRCULAR RED signal indication, a RIGHT TURN SIGNAL (R10-10R) sign (see Figure 2B-27) shall be used unless the CIRCULAR RED signal indication is shielded, hooded, louvered, positioned, or designed such that it is not readily visible to drivers in the through lane(s).
  2. During the protected right-turn movement, a right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall be displayed.
  3. A steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication.
  4. When the separate signal face is providing a message to stop and remain stopped, a steady right-turn RED ARROW signal indication shall be displayed if it is intended that right turns on red not be permitted (except when a traffic control device is in place permitting a turn on a steady RED ARROW signal indication) or a steady CIRCULAR RED signal indication shall be displayed if it is intended that right turns on red be permitted.
  5. If the protected only mode is not the only right-turn mode used for the approach, the signal face shall be the same separate right-turn signal face that is used for the protected/permissive mode (see Section 4D.24 and Figure 4D-19) except that a flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW or flashing right-turn RED ARROW signal indication shall not be displayed when operating in the protected only mode.

Figure 4D-17 Typical Position and Arrangements of Separate Signal Faces for Protected Only Mode Right Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-17

Section 4D.24 Signal Indications for Protected/Permissive Mode Right-Turn Movements

Standard:
01 If a shared signal face is provided for a protected/permissive mode right turn, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-18):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying the following signal indications: steady CIRCULAR RED, steady CIRCULAR YELLOW, CIRCULAR green, steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW, and right-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of the three circular indweications shall be displayed at any given time. Only one of the two arrow indications shall be displayed at any given time. If the right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication and the CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication(s) for the adjacent through movement are always terminated together, the steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall not be required.
  2. During the protected right-turn movement, the shared signal face shall simultaneously display a right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication and a circular signal indication that is the same color as the signal indication for the adjacent through lane on the same approach as the protected right turn.
  3. A steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication, unless the right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication and the CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication(s) for the adjacent through movement are being terminated together. When the right-turn GREEN ARROW and CIRCULAR GREEN signal indications are being terminated together, the required display following the right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall be either the display of a CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication alone or the simultaneous display of the CIRCULAR YELLOW and right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indications.
  4. During the permissive right-turn movement, the shared signal face shall display only a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication.
  5. A protected/permissive shared signal face, regardless of where it is positioned and regardless of how many adjacent through signal faces are provided, shall always simultaneously display the same color of circular indication that the adjacent through signal face or faces display.

Figure 4D-18 Typical Positions and Arrangements of Shared Signal Faces for Protected/Permissive Mode Right Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-18

02 If a separate right-turn signal face is being operated in a protected/permissive right-turn mode, a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication shall not be used in that face.

03 If a separate right-turn signal face is being operated in a protected/permissive right-turn mode and a flashing right-turn yellow arrow signal indication is provided, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-19):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying one of the following sets of signal indications:
    1. Steady right-turn RED ARROW, steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW, flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW, and right-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of the four indications shall be displayed at any given time.
    2. Steady CIRCULAR RED, steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW, flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW, and right-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of the four indications shall be displayed at any given time. If the CIRCULAR RED signal indication is sometimes displayed when the signal faces for the adjacent through lane(s) are not displaying a CIRCULAR RED signal indication, a RIGHT TURN SIGNAL (R10-10R) sign (see Figure 2B-27) shall be used unless the CIRCULAR RED signal indication in the separate right-turn signal face is shielded, hooded, louvered, positioned, or designed such that it is not readily visible to drivers in the through lane(s).
  2. During the protected right-turn movement, a right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall be displayed.
  3. A steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication.
  4. During the permissive right-turn movement, a flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed.
  5. A steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication if the permissive right-turn movement is being terminated and the separate right-turn signal face will subsequently display a steady red indication.
  6. When a permissive right-turn movement is changing to a protected right-turn movement, a right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall be displayed immediately upon the termination of the flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication. A steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall not be displayed between the display of the flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication and the display of the steady right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication.
  7. When the separate right-turn signal face is providing a message to stop and remain stopped, a steady right-turn RED ARROW signal indication shall be displayed if it is intended that right turns on red not be permitted (except when a traffic control device is in place permitting a turn on a steady RED ARROW signal indication) or a steady CIRCULAR RED signal indication shall be displayed if it is intended that right turns on red be permitted.
  8. It shall be permitted to display a flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication for a permissive right-turn movement while the signal faces for the adjacent through movement display steady CIRCULAR RED signal indications.
  9. A signal face containing a dual-arrow signal section in place of separate flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW and right-turn GREEN ARROW signal sections shall be permitted where signal head height limitations (or lateral positioning limitations for a horizontally-mounted signal face) are a concern. The dual-arrow signal section, where used, shall display a GREEN ARROW for the protected right-turn movement and a flashing YELLOW ARROW for the permissive right-turn movement.
  10. During steady mode (stop-and-go) operation, the signal section that displays the steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication during change intervals shall not be used to display the flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication for permissive right turns.
  11. During flashing mode operation (see Section 4D.30), the display of a flashing right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be only from the signal section that displays a steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication during steady mode (stop-and-go) operation.

Figure 4D-19 Typical Position and Arrangements of Separate Signal Faces with Flashing Yellow Arrow for Protected/Permissive Mode and Protected Only Mode Right Turns

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-19

Option:
04 When an engineering study determines that each and every vehicle must successively come to a full stop before making a permissive right turn, a separate signal face that has a flashing right-turn RED ARROW signal indication during the permissive right-turn movement may be used.

Standard:
05 If a separate right-turn signal face is being operated in a protected/permissive right-turn mode and a flashing right-turn RED arrow signal indication is provided, it shall meet the following requirements (see Figure 4D-15):

  1. It shall be capable of displaying one of the following sets of signal indications:
    1. Steady or flashing right-turn RED ARROW, steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW, and right-turn GREEN ARROW. Only one of the three indications shall be displayed at any given time.
    2. Steady CIRCULAR RED on the left and steady or flashing right-turn RED ARROW on the right of the top position, steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW in the middle position, and right-turn GREEN ARROW in the bottom position. Only one of the four indications shall be displayed at any given time. If the CIRCULAR RED signal indication is sometimes displayed when the signal faces for the adjacent through lane(s) are not displaying a CIRCULAR RED signal indication, a RIGHT TURN SIGNAL (R10-10R) sign (see Figure 2B-27) shall be used unless the CIRCULAR RED signal indication in the separate right-turn signal face is shielded, hooded, louvered, positioned, or designed such that it is not readily visible to drivers in the through lane(s).
  2. During the protected right-turn movement, a right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall be displayed.
  3. A steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication.
  4. During the permissive right-turn movement, the separate right-turn signal face shall display a flashing right-turn RED ARROW signal indication.
  5. A steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be displayed following the flashing right-turn RED ARROW signal indication if the permissive right-turn movement is being terminated and the separate right-turn signal face will subsequently display a steady red indication.
  6. When a permissive right-turn movement is changing to a protected right-turn movement, a right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall be displayed immediately upon the termination of the flashing right-turn RED ARROW signal indication. A steady right-turn YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall not be displayed between the display of the flashing right-turn RED ARROW signal indication and the display of the steady right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication.
  7. When the separate right-turn signal face is providing a message to stop and remain stopped, a steady right-turn RED ARROW signal indication shall be displayed if it is intended that right turns on red not be permitted (except when a traffic control device is in place permitting a turn on a steady RED ARROW signal indication) or a steady CIRCULAR RED signal indication shall be displayed if it is intended that right turns on red be permitted.
  8. It shall be permitted to display a flashing right-turn RED ARROW signal indication for a permissive right-turn movement while the signal faces for the adjacent through movement display steady CIRCULAR RED signal indications and the opposing left-turn signal faces display left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indications for a protected left-turn movement.
  9. A supplementary sign shall not be required. If used, it shall be a RIGHT TURN YIELD ON FLASHING RED ARROW AFTER STOP (R10-27) sign (see Figure 2B-27).

Option:
06 The requirements of Item A.1 in Paragraph 5 may be met by a vertically-arranged signal face with a horizontal cluster of two right-turn RED ARROW signal indications, the left-most of which displays a steady indication and the right-most of which displays a flashing indication (see Figure 4D-15).

Section 4D.25 Signal Indications for Approaches With Shared Left-Turn/Right-Turn Lanes and No Through Movement

Support:
01 A lane that is shared by left-turn and right-turn movements is sometimes provided on an approach that has no through movement, such as the stem of a T-intersection or where the opposite approach is a one-way roadway in the opposing direction.

Standard:
02 When a shared left-turn/right-turn lane exists on a signalized approach, the left-turn and right-turn movements shall start and terminate simultaneously and the red signal indication used in each of the signal faces on the approach shall be a CIRCULAR RED.

Support:
03 This requirement for the use of CIRCULAR RED signal indications in signal faces for approaches having a shared lane for left-turn and right-turn movements is a specific exception to other provisions in this Chapter that would otherwise require the use of RED ARROW signal indications.

Standard:
04 The signal faces provided for an approach with a shared left-turn/right-turn lane and no through movement shall be one of the following:

  1. Two or more signal faces, each capable of displaying CIRCULAR RED, CIRCULAR YELLOW, and CIRCULAR GREEN signal indications, shall be provided for the approach. This display shall be permissible regardless of number of exclusive left-turn and/or right-turn lanes that exist on the approach in addition to the shared left-turn/right-turn lane and regardless of whether or not there are pedestrian or opposing vehicular movements that conflict with the left-turn or right-turn movements. However, if there is an opposing approach and the signal phasing protects the left-turn movement on the approach with the shared left-turn/right-turn lane from conflicts with the opposing vehicular movements and any signalized pedestrian movements, a left-turn GREEN ARROW signal indication shall also be included in the left-most signal face and shall be displayed simultaneously with the CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication.
  2. If the approach has one or more exclusive turn lanes in addition to the shared left-turn/right-turn lane and there is no conflict with a signalized vehicular or pedestrian movement, and GREEN ARROW signal indications are used in place of CIRCULAR GREEN signal indications on the approach, the signal faces for the approach shall be:
    1. A signal face(s) capable of displaying CIRCULAR RED, YELLOW ARROW, and GREEN ARROW signal indications for the exclusive turn lane(s), with the arrows pointing in the direction of the turn, and
    2. A shared left-turn/right-turn signal face capable of displaying CIRCULAR RED, left-turn YELLOW ARROW, left-turn GREEN ARROW, right-turn YELLOW ARROW, and right-turn GREEN ARROW signal indications, in an arrangement of signal sections that complies with the provisions of Section 4D.09 or 4D.10.
  3. If the approach has one or more exclusive turn lanes in addition to the shared left-turn/right-turn lane and there is a conflict with a signalized vehicular or pedestrian movement, and flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indications are used in place of CIRCULAR GREEN signal indications on the approach, the signal faces for the approach shall be as described in Items B.1 and B.2, except that flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indications shall be used in place of the GREEN ARROW signal indications for the turning movement(s) that conflicts with the signalized vehicular or pedestrian movement.

Support:
05 Figure 4D-20 illustrates application of these Standards on approaches that have only a shared left-turn/right-turn lane, and on approaches that have one or more exclusive turn lanes in addition to the shared left-turn/right-turn lane.

Figure 4D-20, Sheet 1 Signal Indications for Approaches with a Shared Left-Turn/Right-Turn Lane and No Through Movement (Sheet 1 of 3)

Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-20, Sheet 1   Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-20, Sheet 2   Thumbnail image of Figure 4D-20, Sheet 3

Option:
06 If the lane-use regulations on an approach are variable such that at certain times all of the lanes on the approach are designated as exclusive turn lanes and no lane is designated as a shared left-turn/right-turn lane:

  1. During the times that no lane is designated as a shared left-turn/right-turn lane, the left-turn and right-turn movements may start and terminate independently, and the left-turn and right-turn movements may be operated in one or more of the modes of operation as described in Sections 4D.17 through 4D.24; and
  2. If a protected-permissive mode is used, the shared left-turn/right-turn signal face provided in Paragraph 4 may be modified to include a dual-arrow signal section capable of displaying both a GREEN ARROW signal indication and a flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indication for a turn movement(s) in order to not exceed the maximum of five sections per signal face provided in Section 4D.08.

Section 4D.26 Yellow Change and Red Clearance Intervals

Standard:
01 A steady yellow signal indication shall be displayed following every CIRCULAR GREEN or GREEN ARROW signal indication and following every flashing YELLOW ARROW or flashing RED ARROW signal indication displayed as a part of a steady mode operation. This requirement shall not apply when a CIRCULAR GREEN, a flashing YELLOW ARROW, or a flashing RED ARROW signal indication is followed immediately by a GREEN ARROW signal indication.

02 The exclusive function of the yellow change interval shall be to warn traffic of an impending change in the right-of-way assignment.

03 The duration of the yellow change interval shall be determined using engineering practices.

Support:
04 Section 4D.05 contains provisions regarding the display of steady CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indications to approaches from which drivers are allowed to make permissive left turns.

Guidance:
05 When indicated by the application of engineering practices, the yellow change interval should be followed by a red clearance interval to provide additional time before conflicting traffic movements, including pedestrians, are released.

Standard:
06 When used, the duration of the red clearance interval shall be determined using engineering practices.

Support:
07 Engineering practices for determining the duration of yellow change and red clearance intervals can be found in ITE's "Traffic Control Devices Handbook" and in ITE's "Manual of Traffic Signal Design" (see Section 1A.11).

Standard:
08 The durations of yellow change intervals and red clearance intervals shall be consistent with the determined values within the technical capabilities of the controller unit.

09 The duration of a yellow change interval shall not vary on a cycle-by-cycle basis within the same signal timing plan.

10 Except as provided in Paragraph 12, the duration of a red clearance interval shall not be decreased or omitted on a cycle-by-cycle basis within the same signal timing plan.

Option:
11 The duration of a red clearance interval may be extended from its predetermined value for a given cycle based upon the detection of a vehicle that is predicted to violate the red signal indication.

12 When an actuated signal sequence includes a signal phase for permissive/protected (lagging) left-turn movements in both directions, the red clearance interval may be shown during those cycles when the lagging left-turn signal phase is skipped and may be omitted during those cycles when the lagging left-turn signal phase is shown.

13 The duration of a yellow change interval or a red clearance interval may be different in different signal timing plans for the same controller unit.

Guidance:
14 A yellow change interval should have a minimum duration of 3 seconds and a maximum duration of 6 seconds. The longer intervals should be reserved for use on approaches with higher speeds.

15 Except when clearing a one-lane, two-way facility (see Section 4H.02) or when clearing an exceptionally wide intersection, a red clearance interval should have a duration not exceeding 6 seconds.

Standard:
16 Except for warning beacons mounted on advance warning signs on the approach to a signalized location (see Section 2C.36), signal displays that are intended to provide a "pre-yellow warning" interval, such as flashing green signal indications, vehicular countdown displays, or other similar displays, shall not be used at a signalized location.

Support:
17 The use of signal displays (other than warning beacons mounted on advance warning signs) that convey a "pre-yellow warning" have been found by research to increase the frequency of crashes.

Section 4D.27 Preemption and Priority Control of Traffic Control Signals

Option:
01 Traffic control signals may be designed and operated to respond to certain classes of approaching vehicles by altering the normal signal timing and phasing plan(s) during the approach and passage of those vehicles. The alternative plan(s) may be as simple as extending a currently displayed green interval or as complex as replacing the entire set of signal phases and timing.

Support:
02 Preemption control (see definition in Section 1A.13) is typically given to trains, boats, emergency vehicles, and light rail transit.

03 Examples of preemption control include the following:

  1. The prompt displaying of green signal indications at signalized locations ahead of fire vehicles, law enforcement vehicles, ambulances, and other official emergency vehicles;
  2. A special sequence of signal phases and timing to expedite and/or provide additional clearance time for vehicles to clear the tracks prior to the arrival of rail traffic; and
  3. A special sequence of signal phases to display a steady red indication to prohibit turning movements toward the tracks during the approach or passage of rail traffic.

04 Priority control (see definition in Section 1A.13) is typically given to certain non-emergency vehicles such as light-rail transit vehicles operating in a mixed-use alignment and buses.

05 Examples of priority control include the following:

  1. The displaying of early or extended green signal indications at an intersection to assist public transit vehicles in remaining on schedule, and
  2. Special phasing to assist public transit vehicles in entering the travel stream ahead of the platoon of traffic.

06 Some types or classes of vehicles supersede others when a traffic control signal responds to more than one type or class. In general, a vehicle that is more difficult to control supersedes a vehicle that is easier to control.

Option:
07 Preemption or priority control of traffic control signals may also be a means of assigning priority right-of-way to specified classes of vehicles at certain non-intersection locations such as on approaches to one-lane bridges and tunnels, movable bridges, highway maintenance and construction activities, metered freeway entrance ramps, and transit operations.

Standard:
08 During the transition into preemption control:

  1. The yellow change interval, and any red clearance interval that follows, shall not be shortened or omitted.
  2. The shortening or omission of any pedestrian walk interval and/or pedestrian change interval shall be permitted.
  3. The return to the previous green signal indication shall be permitted following a steady yellow signal indication in the same signal face, omitting the red clearance interval, if any.

09 During preemption control and during the transition out of preemption control:

  1. The shortening or omission of any yellow change interval, and of any red clearance interval that follows, shall not be permitted.
  2. A signal indication sequence from a steady yellow signal indication to a green signal indication shall not be permitted.

10 During priority control and during the transition into or out of priority control:

  1. The shortening or omission of any yellow change interval, and of any red clearance interval that follows, shall not be permitted.
  2. The shortening of any pedestrian walk interval below that time described in Section 4E.06 shall not be permitted.
  3. The omission of a pedestrian walk interval and its associated change interval shall not be permitted unless the associated vehicular phase is also omitted or the pedestrian phase is exclusive.
  4. The shortening or omission of any pedestrian change interval shall not be permitted.
  5. A signal indication sequence from a steady yellow signal indication to a green signal indication shall not be permitted.

Guidance:
11 Except for traffic control signals interconnected with light rail transit systems, traffic control signals with railroad preemption or coordinated with flashing-light signal systems should be provided with a back-up power supply.

12 When a traffic control signal that is returning to a steady mode from a dark mode (typically upon restoration from a power failure) receives a preemption or priority request, care should be exercised to minimize the possibility of vehicles or pedestrians being misdirected into a conflict with the vehicle making the request.

Option:
13 During the change from a dark mode to a steady mode under a preemption or priority request, the display of signal indications that could misdirect road users may be prevented by one or more of the following methods:

  1. Having the traffic control signal remain in the dark mode,
  2. Having the traffic control signal remain in the flashing mode,
  3. Altering the flashing mode,
  4. Executing the normal start-up routine before responding, or
  5. Responding directly to initial or dwell period.

Guidance:
14 If a traffic control signal is installed near or within a grade crossing or if a grade crossing with active traffic control devices is within or near a signalized highway intersection, Chapter 8C should be consulted.

15 Traffic control signals operating under preemption control or under priority control should be operated in a manner designed to keep traffic moving.

16 Traffic control signals that are designed to respond under preemption or priority control to more than one type or class of vehicle should be designed to respond in the relative order of importance or difficulty in stopping the type or class of vehicle. The order of priority should be: train, boat, heavy vehicle (fire vehicle, emergency medical service), light vehicle (law enforcement), light rail transit, rubber-tired transit.

Option:
17 A distinctive indication may be provided at the intersection to show that an emergency vehicle has been given control of the traffic control signal (see Section 11-106 of the "Uniform Vehicle Code"). In order to assist in the understanding of the control of the traffic signal, a common distinctive indication may be used where drivers from different agencies travel through the same intersection when responding to emergencies.

18 If engineering judgment indicates that light rail transit signal indications would reduce road user confusion that might otherwise occur if standard traffic signal indications were used to control these movements, light rail transit signal indications complying with Section 8C.11 and as illustrated in Figure 8C-3 may be used for preemption or priority control of the following exclusive movements at signalized intersections:

  1. Public transit buses in "queue jumper" lanes, and
  2. Bus rapid transit in semi-exclusive or mixed-use alignments.

Section 4D.28 Flashing Operation of Traffic Control Signals – General

Standard:
01 The light source of a flashing signal indication shall be flashed continuously at a rate of not less than 50 or more than 60 times per minute.

02 The displayed period of each flash shall be a minimum of 1/2 and a maximum of 2/3 of the total flash cycle.

03 Flashing signal indications shall comply with the requirements of other Sections of this Manual regarding visibility-limiting or positioning of conflicting signal indications, except that flashing yellow signal indications for through traffic shall not be required to be visibility-limited or positioned to minimize visual conflict for road users in separately controlled turn lanes.

04 Each traffic control signal shall be provided with an independent flasher mechanism that operates in compliance with this Section.

05 The flashing operation shall not be terminated by removal or turn off of the controller unit or of the conflict monitor (malfunction management unit) or both.

06 A manual switch, a conflict monitor (malfunction management unit) circuit, and, if appropriate, automatic means shall be provided to initiate the flashing mode.

Option:
07 Based on engineering study or engineering judgment, traffic control signals may be operated in the flashing mode on a scheduled basis during one or more periods of the day rather than operated continuously in the steady (stop-and-go) mode.

Support:
08 Sections 4E.06 and 4E.09 contain information regarding the operation of pedestrian signal heads and accessible pedestrian signal detector pushbutton locator tones, respectively, during flashing operation.

Section 4D.29 Flashing Operation – Transition Into Flashing Mode

Standard:
01 The transition from steady (stop-and-go) mode to flashing mode, if initiated by a conflict monitor (malfunction management unit) or by a manual switch, shall be permitted to be made at any time.

02 Programmed changes from steady (stop-and-go) mode to flashing mode shall be made under either of the following circumstances:

  1. At the end of the common major-street red interval (such as just prior to the start of the green in both directions on the major street), or
  2. Directly from a CIRCULAR GREEN signal indication to a flashing CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication, or from a GREEN ARROW signal indication to a flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indication, or from a flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indication (see Sections 4D.17 to 4D.24) to a flashing YELLOW ARROW signal indication in a different signal section.

03 During programmed changes into flashing mode, no green signal indication or flashing yellow signal indication shall be terminated and immediately followed by a steady red or flashing red signal indication without first displaying the steady yellow signal indication.

Section 4D.30 Flashing Operation – Signal Indications During Flashing Mode

Guidance:
01 When a traffic control signal is operated in the flashing mode, a flashing yellow signal indication should be used for the major street and a flashing red signal indication should be used for the other approaches unless flashing red signal indications are used on all approaches.

Standard:
02 When a traffic control signal is operated in the flashing mode, all of the green signal indications at the signalized location shall be dark (non-illuminated) and shall not be displayed in either a steady or flashing manner, except for single-section GREEN ARROW signal indications as provided elsewhere in this Section.

03 Flashing yellow signal indications shall be used on more than one approach to a signalized location only if those approaches do not conflict with each other.

04 Except as provided in Paragraph 5, when a traffic control signal is operated in the flashing mode, one and only one signal indication in every signal face at the signalized location shall be flashed.

Option:
05 If a signal face has two identical CIRCULAR RED or RED ARROW signal indications (see Section 4D.08), both of those identical signal indications may be flashed simultaneously.

Standard:
06 No steady indications, other than a single-section signal face consisting of a continuously-displayed GREEN ARROW signal indication that is used alone to indicate a continuous movement in the steady (stop-and-go) mode, shall be displayed at the signalized location during the flashing mode. A single-section GREEN ARROW signal indication shall remain continuously-displayed when the traffic control signal is operated in the flashing mode.

07 If a signal face includes both circular and arrow signal indications of the color that is to be flashed, only the circular signal indication shall be flashed.

08 All signal faces that are flashed on an approach shall flash the same color, either yellow or red, except that separate turn signal faces (see Sections 4D.17 and 4D.21) shall be permitted to flash a RED ARROW signal indication when the adjacent through movement signal indications are flashed yellow. Shared signal faces (see Sections 4D.17 and 4D.21) for turn movements shall not be permitted to flash a CIRCULAR RED signal indication when the adjacent through movement signal indications are flashed yellow.

09 The appropriate RED ARROW or YELLOW ARROW signal indication shall be flashed when a signal face consists entirely of arrow indications. A signal face that consists entirely of arrow indications and that provides a protected only turn movement during the steady (stop-and-go) mode or that provides a flashing yellow arrow or flashing red arrow signal indication for a permissive turn movement during the steady (stop-and-go) mode shall be permitted to flash the YELLOW ARROW signal indication during the flashing mode if the adjacent through movement signal indications are flashed yellow and if it is intended that a permissive turn movement not requiring a full stop by each turning vehicle be provided during the flashing mode.

Section 4D.31 Flashing Operation – Transition Out of Flashing Mode

Standard:
01 All changes from flashing mode to steady (stop-and-go) mode shall be made under one of the following procedures:

  1. Yellow-red flashing mode: Changes from flashing mode to steady (stop-and-go) mode shall be made at the beginning of the major-street green interval (when a green signal indication is displayed to through traffic in both directions on the major street), or if there is no common major-street green interval, at the beginning of the green interval for the major traffic movement on the major street.
  2. Red-red flashing mode: Changes from flashing mode to steady (stop-and-go) mode shall be made by changing the flashing red indications to steady red indications followed by appropriate green indications to begin the steady mode cycle. These green indications shall be the beginning of the major-street green interval (when a green signal indication is displayed to through traffic in both directions on the major street) or if there is no common major-street green interval, at the beginning of the green interval for the major traffic movement on the major street.

Guidance:
02 The steady red clearance interval provided during the change from red-red flashing mode to steady (stop-and-go) mode should have a duration of 6 seconds.

03 When changing from the yellow-red flashing mode to steady (stop-and-go) mode, if there is no common major-street green interval, the provision of a steady red clearance interval for the other approaches before changing from a flashing yellow or a flashing red signal indication to a green signal indication on the major approach should be considered.

Standard:
04 During programmed changes out of flashing mode, no flashing yellow signal indication shall be terminated and immediately followed by a steady red or flashing red signal indication without first displaying the steady yellow signal indication.

Option:
05 Because special midblock signals that rest in flashing circular yellow in the position normally occupied by the green signal indication do not have a green signal indication in the signal face, these signals may go directly from flashing circular yellow (in the position normally occupied by the green signal indication) to steady yellow without going first to a green signal indication.

Section 4D.32 Temporary and Portable Traffic Control Signals

Support:
01 A temporary traffic control signal is generally installed using methods that minimize the costs of installation, relocation, and/or removal. Typical temporary traffic control signals are for specific purposes, such as for one-lane, two-way facilities in temporary traffic control zones (see Chapter 4H), for a haul-road intersection, or for access to a site that will have a permanent access point developed at another location in the near future.

Standard:
02 Advance signing shall be used when employing a temporary traffic control signal.

03 A temporary traffic control signal shall:

  1. Meet the physical display and operational requirements of a conventional traffic control signal.
  2. Be removed when no longer needed.
  3. Be placed in the flashing mode when not being used if it will be operated in the steady mode within 5 working days; otherwise, it shall be removed.
  4. Be placed in the flashing mode during periods when it is not desirable to operate the signal, or the signal heads shall be covered, turned, or taken down to indicate that the signal is not in operation.

Guidance:
04 A temporary traffic control signal should be used only if engineering judgment indicates that installing the signal will improve the overall safety and/or operation of the location.

05 The use of temporary traffic control signals by a work crew on a regular basis in their work area should be subject to the approval of the jurisdiction having authority over the roadway.

06 A temporary traffic control signal should not operate longer than 30 days unless associated with a longer-term temporary traffic control zone project.

07 For use of temporary traffic control signals in temporary traffic control zones, reference should be made to Section 6F.84.

Section 4D.33 Lateral Offset of Signal Supports and Cabinets

Guidance:
01 The following items should be considered when placing signal supports and cabinets:

  1. Reference should be made to the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) "Roadside Design Guide" (see Section 1A.11) and to the "Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines for Buildings and Facilities (ADAAG)" (see Section 1A.11).
  2. Signal supports should be placed as far as practical from the edge of the traveled way without adversely affecting the visibility of the signal indications.
  3. Where supports cannot be located based on the recommended AASHTO clearances, consideration should be given to the use of appropriate safety devices.
  4. No part of a concrete base for a signal support should extend more than 4 inches above the ground level at any point. This limitation does not apply to the concrete base for a rigid support.
  5. In order to minimize hindrance to the passage of persons with physical disabilities, a signal support or controller cabinet should not obstruct the sidewalk, or access from the sidewalk to the crosswalk.
  6. Controller cabinets should be located as far as practical from the edge of the roadway.
  7. On medians, the minimum clearances provided in Items A through E for signal supports should be obtained if practical.

Section 4D.34 Use of Signs at Signalized Locations

Support:
01 Traffic signal signs are sometimes used at highway traffic signal locations to instruct or guide pedestrians, bicyclists, or motorists. Among the signs typically used at or on the approaches to signalized locations are movement prohibition signs (see Section 2B.18), lane control signs (see Sections 2B.19 to 2B.22), pedestrian crossing signs (see Section 2B.51), pedestrian actuation signs (see Section 2B.52), traffic signal signs (see Sections 2B.53 and 2C.48), Signal Ahead warning signs (see Section 2C.36), Street Name signs (see Section 2D.43), and Advance Street Name signs (see Section 2D.44).

Guidance:
02 Regulatory, warning, and guide signs should be used at traffic control signal locations as provided in Part 2 and as specifically provided elsewhere in Part 4.

03 Traffic signal signs should be located adjacent to the signal face to which they apply.

Support:
04 Section 2B.19 contains information regarding the use of overhead lane control signs on signalized approaches where lane drops, multiple-lane turns involving shared through-and-turn lanes, or other lane-use regulations that would be unexpected by unfamiliar road users are present.

Standard:
05 If used, illuminated traffic signal signs shall be designed and mounted in such a manner as to avoid glare and reflections that seriously detract from the signal indications. Traffic control signal faces shall be given dominant position and brightness to maximize their priority in the overall display.

06 The minimum vertical clearance and horizontal offset of the total assembly of traffic signal signs (see Section 2B.53) shall comply with the provisions of Sections 4D.15 and 4D.16.

07 STOP signs shall not be used in conjunction with any traffic control signal operation, except in either of the following cases:

  1. If the signal indication for an approach is a flashing red at all times, or
  2. If a minor street or driveway is located within or adjacent to the area controlled by the traffic control signal, but does not require separate traffic signal control because an extremely low potential for conflict exists.

Section 4D.35 Use of Pavement Markings at Signalized Locations

Support:
01 Pavement markings (see Part 3) that clearly communicate the operational plan of an intersection to road users play an important role in the effective operation of traffic control signals. By designating the number of lanes, the use of each lane, the length of additional lanes on the approach to an intersection, and the proper stopping points, the engineer can design the signal phasing and timing to best match the goals of the operational plan.

Guidance:
02 Pavement markings should be used at traffic control signal locations as provided in Part 3. If the road surface will not retain pavement markings, signs should be installed to provide the needed road user information.

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