Traffic Signals

Traffic signals allow the orderly movement of vehicles and pedestrians through an otherwise challenging intersection. Usually, signals are at intersections of streets with high traffic volumes.

State Law requires that prior to installing a traffic signal an engineering study must be completed. This study should document that the installation of a signal is necessary to improve the overall operation of the intersection.

The study for installation of traffic signals is based upon the following criteria documented in the national Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices:

  • consistently high traffic volume
  • a crash rate which may be reduced
  • excessive wait time for vehicles or pedestrians to cross an intersection
  • restricted visibility
  • a high volume of pedestrian traffic

Turn Signals: Understanding the Signal for Your Turn Lane

At many major intersections across Lincoln, arrow signals are used for both left and right turns. Studies show that arrow signals provide clearer instruction and result in fewer crashes.

  • Solid red arrow: STOP. No turns allowed.
    Do not enter the intersection to turn.
    Stop and wait until the signal changes.
  • Solid yellow arrow: Prepare to stop.
    The signal will soon be red for turning traffic.
    If legally in the intersection, wait for a safe gap in oncoming traffic to complete the turn.
  • Flashing yellow arrow: Yield, and turn when safe.
    Yield to oncoming traffic and pedestrians in the crosswalk; then turn.
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  • Solid green arrow: Turns allowed and protected.
    Turning traffic has the right of way.
    Oncoming traffic and pedestrians are stopped.