Videos

Sending a TESLA down California’s MOST ZIG-ZAGGY street!

Petar, a fellow road fan, helps us indulge in a highly unscientific experiment: Sending a Tesla Model 3 (loaded with “Full Self Driving” tech) down California’s crookedest street! Sources cited: “Autopilot and Full Self-Driving Capability,” Tesla company statement. Retrieved 18 Oct. 2022. https://www.tesla.com/support/autopilot “SAE Levels of Driving Automation™ Refined for Clarity and International Audience,” SAE […]

Los Angeles THREW AWAY all their RED-LIGHT cameras?

At one point, Los Angeles had over 100 cameras to catch red-light runners. Then the city tore ’em all out. Here’s why. Research: “Police look to cameras to catch traffic violators”The Los Angeles Times, 13 Jun 2000, p.B4A “Voices: A Green Light on Red-Light Cameras”The Los Angeles Times, 8 Sep 2001, p.B21 “Red-Light Cameras Focus […]

Stop lights can… RUIN a street for bicyclists?

Crossing the street on your bike should be easy and safe. Stop lights to help you, also invite cars onto your bike route. Engineers in Tucson, Arizona solve this dilemma with two special signals just for bicycles (Toucans and BikeHAWKs).

Can this “HAWK” STOP LIGHT make walking feel SAFE again?

Middle-of-the-block crosswalks are terrible. Most do not qualify for a stop light. I meet the inventor of the Pedestrian Hybrid (HAWK) beacon, a traffic device that fixes America’s forgotten crosswalks.

Why freeway exits and chickens don’t mix!

So, you’re having this really nice walk across town when suddenly, there’s a freeway you have to cross. Seeing a large bridges with nice big sidewalks can be a relief. But what about those pesky interchanges where cars are entering and exiting the freeway? It gets a little bit scarier at newfangled designs which work […]

Would you drive on this flip-flopped freeway interchage?

America loves “diamond” highway exits. Which is too bad, because when life gets busy, they work pretty terribly. Gil Chlewicki, the “adoptive” father of the Diverging Diamond Interchange (DDI), explains why it’s time to untangle our freeway interchanges.

Rebuilding the road? Don’t forget about joggers and bicyclists!

Avid bicyclists roll their eyes as state engineers rebuild a highway through town. Tyranny of the car, right? Here’s a project in Utah which added a raised median that unlocked an avalanche of really cool safety improvements — including a traffic signal just for bikes!

Why does this street BLOCK off Arby’s (but not McDonald’s)?

Raised medians reduce left turns which prevents crashes (and saves lives). But cities only block left turns for some businesses and not others. How can the engineers decide fairly? And what do we do with drivers who still need to turn left? ——————————- Additional reading: ——————————- Federal Highway Administration. https://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/saferjourney1/library/countermeasures/16.htm. Accessed Jun. 9, 2021.

Does a turn lane really deserve its terrible nickname?

Traffic travels in both directions. So it makes sense we’d have a malicious moniker for two-way left turn lanes (TWLTLs). Are they actually dangerous, though? Let’s look at the safety of these middle lanes. After all, they are on roads pretty much everywhere in the United States. ————– Sources cited: ————– Mukherjee, D. Choosing Between […]

Radar can make green lights longer?

The light turns yellow and you find yourself in a panic. Should I slam on my brakes and risk getting rear-ended? Or should I run the yellow— and possibly in the process, the red too? Every stop light on the planet has one of these “A BAD PLACES.” Radar technology can act like a life […]

Are some yellow lights TOO SHORT? (Math to check it!)

Getting a red light ticket feels really crummy. When yellow lights (“change intervals”) are set long enough, red light runners vanish. For safety, why don’t we double or triple the length of yellow lights? Check out pt. 2: Our brains and yellow lights — https://youtu.be/P_EmAKRrlBc ——————————- Sources cited: ——————————- “Guidelines for Timing Yellow and All-Red […]

Phoenix without freeways?

In the 1970s, Arizonans resoundingly voted “NO” to completing Interstate 10 through downtown Phoenix. But that’s because I-10 would have been a ten-story tall freeway bridge through the north of downtown. But the “NO” vote canceled all new freeways, including finishing Interstate 10 coast to coast.

How do red lights “see” your car and know to turn green?

How does a traffic signal knows when to turn green? Especially late at night when you are the only driver on the road. In this video, I chat with two traffic signal experts: Mohammed Bendelhoum, an engineer with the California Dept. of Transportation (Caltrans) and Brian Girardo (Iteris) explore the history of vehicle detection (induction […]

Are roundabouts REALLY better than a traffic signal?

Traffic signals are not scary. Roundabouts can be, especially if you’ve never driven one before. Let’s take a fun dive into America’s fastest-growing transportation design. Are these spinny circles really better that a traffic light or just a passing fad? Enjoy my video? https://www.patreon.com/roadguyrob