Contact: Marcus Sandifer
Phone: (903) 799-1306
Date: Dec. 19, 2019
An innovative traffic conflict monitoring system has begun operation at a Marshall intersection by the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) as a means to help reduce crashes at the location.
“The system is being installed at the intersection of Loop 390 and Farm to Market Road 1998. We have had several serious crashes at this location over time,” said Rebecca Wells, Director of Transportation Operations for TxDOT in Atlanta. “Traffic using the intersection does not meet warrants for a traffic signal, but this new system should help to warn motorists when they may be encountering cross traffic as they approach the intersection.”
Traffic on FM 1998 stops for traffic on Loop 390 and sensors mounted on the loop 500 feet away from the intersection will detect traffic approaching from either direction and will activate flashing beacons and a message board warning drivers “Traffic Approaching.” The sign will be blank when no traffic is detected on Loop 390.
Sensors are also mounted at the intersection on FM 1998 that will detect vehicles stopping at the intersection. Static signs stating “Entering Traffic” are located 500 feet from the intersection will have flashing beacons that will begin flashing when vehicles are detected on FM 1998.
“This is the first time a traffic conflict monitoring system like this has been installed on a highway system in the Atlanta District, so we will be watching to see how effective it is in decreasing crashes,” Wells said. “This system has been used effectively in other states including Minnesota, Missouri and North Carolina and has been studied by the Federal Highway Administration Office of Safety Research and Development.”
In addition to the traffic monitoring system, street lights have also been added on Loop 390 to help illuminate the intersection at night. The flashing beacons, amber on Loop 390 and red on FM 1998, have been installed on new mast arms at the intersection.
Total intersection improvements cost an estimated $152,000 and were paid by federal safety funds available to TxDOT.
The new system began full operation on Thursday, Dec. 19.