Lights stuck on red - Cliff Pope
There is a long stretch of roadworks on my way to work (rural A road) with temporary (ie semi-permanent!) traffic lights. Yesterday the lights were stuck on red in both directions.
Drivers divided into 2 camps: those who waited virtually indefinitely, and the majority who gave the lights a minute and then ignored them.
Am I right that strictly speaking it is an offence to pass any red traffic light, even if the system has failed?
This was at 7.30 am, so no workmen around. But even if a council workman had been there, does he have authority to wave motorists through a red light? Does a policeman?
What is the correct thing to do if traffic liughts have stuck?
Lights stuck on red - wemyss
Haven't we all had similar problems Cliff with these temporary traffic lights.
Similar scenario is when the oncoming traffic finally stops at the other end.. you wait for it to turn green and it dosn't.
A minute later oncoming traffic begins again and you're thinking what about my turn.
And then you time it stops at the other end I'm going through on red as they must be faulty.
I don't think there's any real answer apart from the old adage of proceed with caution.
Years ago we used to have laddo with his stop-go pole which couldn't go wrong unless he fell asleep but that was in the days of council workmen. Nowadays anyone seems to be able to put a set of lights on a job so I expect legislation must now be in place for this.
But I recall as a lad that roadworks used to have an old fella as a night watchman. They would have a 50 gallon drum punched full of holes with a pick and be filled to the top with burning coke and a couple of chairs alongside.
Memories of walkin back home from the pictures (cinema)late on a Saturday night and sitting round his drum having a yarn.
Sorry for digressing Cliff...
Lights stuck on red - Flat in Fifth
I thought that you can be instructed to cross a red light only by a uniform or other authorised person eg traffic warden.

Just to digress further re traffic lights and road works.

Road works convoy systems. Maybe volvod5dude knows where I mean.

A449 N of Ombersley between Worcester and Kidderminster.

Dual 50 limit. Roadworks resurfacing, new paint, studs etc.

Temporary 40 limit 24/7 except when someone is working.

When worforce present a 10 mph (yes that really is ten ) limit is enforced rigidly by convoy working.

So you have to sit at a red light the road blocked off by an Astra van the convoy leader.

You wait until there is enough of a queue built up, yes seriously!

Then Astra drives off through the road works at 9.99 (recurring) mph past a load of no action for about a mile plus until you pass the two guys actually working.

At which point several hundred metres later of 9.99 mph past nothing Astra pulls off and you can then go on your merry way at 40.

There is no contraflow system as its a dual, the same system was imposed on the other side on the way back.

Far as I can see there are four to six vans with driver operating this dependant upon time of day.

Is this seen anywhere else?

Lights stuck on red - Phil I
Yes on A361 last year FiF when resurfacing. This was single carriagway but the work was being done at night. Seems a bit of overkill on A449 if in daylight. However were I a roadworker I should not fancy it at any time with some of the idiots on the roads at the present.
Lights stuck on red - Robin
there was one of these covoy systems in operation last week on the A429 a few miles south of Stow on the Wold. Very time consuming.
Lights stuck on red - SteveH42
I believe this may be related to an incident where a roadworker was killed by someone going too fast in roadworks. Possibly overkill, but what better way to get the message through?
Lights stuck on red - tone
On a related note, i love those 'follow me' cars they have in america. We were driving through nevada (about 50 miles north of tonopah, nothing but desert and aliens) and came to a 'stop and wait here sign', so we got out of the car and had a break, after a few minutes a pickup turned up and we had to follow it through a couple of miles of roadworks
Lights stuck on red - tone
Having read the followups, i think it must have been a holiday thing that made it more interesting, it would annoy me no end if they did it around watford
Lights stuck on red - Robert Fleming
I looked the answer to this up once upon a time in 'Blackstone's Criminal Practice'. A very heavy book.

Going through a red light of your own volition is always an offence, but provided that the traffic lights were faulty, and you drove slowly enough, the appropriate penalty is a conditional discharge.
Lights stuck on red - Dynamic Dave
Where\'s DVD when you need him?

Anyway, here\'s my 2 pennies worth. As far as I understand it, you can drive through a set of temporary lights when they\'re on red providing you can see clearly right through to the other end of the roadworks and beyond. And it goes without saying providing nothing is coming from the other direction of course.

Come on DVD, lets have the correct proceedure ;o)
Lights stuck on red - Flat in Fifth
bit heavy reading but my emphasis added where necessary

Traffic Signs Regulations & General Directions 2002.

Section 5 para 36

Significance of light signals prescribed by regulations 33 to 35
36. - (1) The significance of the light signals prescribed by regulations 33, 34 and 35 shall be as follows -

(a) subject to sub-paragraph (b) and, where the red signal is shown at the same time as the green arrow signal, to sub-paragraphs (f) and (g), the red signal shall convey the prohibition that vehicular traffic shall not proceed beyond the stop line;

(b) when a vehicle is being used for fire brigade, ambulance, bomb or explosive disposal, national blood service or police purposes and the observance of the prohibition conveyed by the red signal in accordance with sub-paragraph (a) would be likely to hinder the use of that vehicle for the purpose for which it is being used, then sub-paragraph (a) shall not apply to the vehicle, and the red signal shall convey the prohibition that that vehicle shall not proceed beyond the stop line in a manner or at a time likely to endanger any person or to cause the driver of any vehicle proceeding in accordance with the indications of light signals operating in association with the signals displaying the red signal to change its speed or course in order to avoid an accident;

(c) the red-with-amber signal shall, subject in a case where it is displayed at the same time as the green arrow signal to sub-paragraph (f), denote an impending change to green or a green arrow in the indication given by the signals but shall convey the same prohibition as the red signal;

(d) the green signal shall indicate that vehicular traffic may proceed beyond the stop line and proceed straight on or to the left or to the right;

(e) the amber signal shall, when shown alone, convey the same prohibition as the red signal, except that, as respects any vehicle which is so close to the stop line that it cannot safely be stopped without proceeding beyond the stop line, it shall convey the same indication as the green signal or green arrow signal which was shown immediately before it;

(f) save as provided in sub-paragraphs (g) and (h), the green arrow signal shall indicate that vehicular traffic may, notwithstanding any other indication given by the signals, proceed beyond the stop line only in the direction indicated by the arrow for the purpose of proceeding in that direction through the junction controlled by those signals;

(g) where more than one green arrow is affixed to light signals in accordance with regulation 34(1)(b), vehicular traffic, notwithstanding any other indication given by the signals, may proceed beyond the stop line only in the direction indicated by any one of the green arrows for the purpose of proceeding in that direction through the junction controlled by those signals; and

(h) where the green arrow signal is displayed at the same time as the green signal, vehicular traffic may proceed in the direction indicated by the green arrow in accordance with sub-paragraph (g) or in any other direction in accordance with sub-paragraph (d).

(2) Vehicular traffic proceeding beyond a stop line in accordance with paragraph (1) shall proceed with due regard to the safety of other road users and subject to any direction given by a constable in uniform or a traffic warden or to any other applicable prohibition or restriction.

(3) In this regulation the expressions \"vehicle\" and \"vehicular traffic\" do not include tramcars.

Lights stuck on red - Dwight Van Driver
Huffing and puffing, Mole scurried into Badgers House.
?Oh Badge,? said Mole ? It?s Toad and I think he is in trouble. He was at some temporary lights that seemed to be showing red forever and ever so being the impetuous one he is he drove through them. Now he is worried and wonders what he should have done??

?No probs Mole? replied Badger putting on his studious air.
?Firstly like any Traffic Sign, temporary lights have to confirm to certain criteria as to shape, size and colour and all this is contained in The Traffic Signs and General Directions 2002. If they don?t then they are not lawful although once placed they are deemed to be so until the contrary is proved. Also under Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 S64 (4) they can only be placed on a road by specifically authorized people which include, Local Traffic Authority, Plod authorized by his Chief or any other person in respect of a temporary obstruction. So accepting the Lights are lawful then at red he should stop.?

?But what if the red light is defective?? queried Mole.

?Ah then that?s a different kettle of fish,? pronounced Badger. ? Long ago in 1959, where lights had apparently stuck at red, a District Judge of Dublin District Court, held that a driver who had waited a reasonable time for them to change in his favour may then proceed with caution against them. This is on the criminal side regarding a prosecution but it is thought that on the civil side there may be no defence. In effect what was said that in fact, if the lights have failed a motorist might ignore the lights because the lights, having failed, no longer comply with the Regulations. The onus being of course on the transgressor. Now IIRC this reasoning has been adopted in the UK?

Mole frowned, ?But if at lights and someone waves you through is that alright??

?All depends my little friend. If Plod is doing Traffic Duty in uniform and the lights are at Green and he tells you to stop then you have to do so. But, if the light is at red and Plod waves you to come on then the red light takes precedence and you do not move until such time as Plod covers over the lights or turns then round.?

?Phew ? said a relieved Mole, ?Thanks for that for I know he is an engaging chap and for his riposte Toad can get banned. If this was permanent then he would leave the Riverbank, others would follow and the place would not be the same. Mark my words?.?
Lights stuck on red - Flat in Fifth

Re: last paragraph:

rolling around on the floor laughing so much it hurts.

Lights stuck on red - Stargazer {P}

Wonderful, thanks for brightening up my morning


Ian L.
Lights stuck on red - Galaxy
Brilliant, absolutely brilliant !!!


Value my car