As part of an initiative to improve traffic safety and efficiency, the City of Wichita is introducing a new type of left turn signal for vehicles. A blinking yellow arrow will soon appear for the first time at new signalized crossings.
The West Street project, which runs from Kellogg to Harry, is the first in the city to use flashing yellow arrows, which will be in place at the intersections of Walker and West Street and Harry and West Street.
According to national data, flashers installed on permissive turn arrows lowers the number of left-turn crashes by about 20 percent. Studies have shown that a flashing yellow arrow not only warns that a vehicle must yield, but it is also a more recognizable form of caution to drivers, given that the yellow light they’re driving past is most often linked with caution.
The City will employ flashing yellow arrows on all new traffic signals where they see fit. Existing signal indicators would only be adapted on a case-by-case basis, based on the results of an engineering study. In Wichita, there are approximately 480 signalized intersections.