South Africa to get new ‘in-road’ lights for drivers – what you should know

 ·8 Jul 2022

The City of Cape Town is developing in-road warning lights to better encourage better driving behaviour across the city.

The concept was initially developed during the preparation for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, where the city identified a need to provide pedestrians with a safe passage over Buitengracht when walking between the CBD and the V&A Waterfront.

One of the safety feature solutions decided on at the time was to install ‘In-road warning lights’ that operate in sync with the red traffic signals indicating to vehicular traffic to stop.

The in-road warning lights were installed to reduce the occurrence of drivers stopping beyond the stop line and within the pedestrian crossing, and forcing pedestrians to divert around the stopped vehicles, sometimes outside of the crossing itself.

“The purpose of the red in-road warning lights is to create a visual barrier ahead of the pedestrian crossing line so that drivers get the message that stopping beyond the lights is not allowed,” said the city’s mayoral committee member for urban mobility Rob Quintas.

“We intend to motivate to the Minister of Transport for this inclusion of these lights in the Southern African Development Community Road Traffic Signs Manual (SADC-RTSM) in the current financial year.”

The adoption of lane lights within the national Road Traffic Signs Manual will allow the city to implement this light system at other major intersections where this problem exists, he said.

“Reinstalling these lights forms part of our efforts to renew City infrastructure that has worked effectively in the past and to incorporate innovative transport nudging techniques which is a popular way of encouraging better driver behaviour across major international cities worldwide,” he said.

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