To encourage safer driving across the city, the Los Angeles Department of Transportation has adjusted signals across the City to “nighttime mode.” As people are ordered to stay at home, traffic volumes have significantly decreased. The good news is that traffic and air quality have significantly improved. The bad news is that empty streets seem to encourage some Angelenos to speed dangerously through the City.
LADOT operates the most advanced signal synchronization system in the world, which means that typically, signals are coordinated automatically to help ease traffic congestion. The timing of signals is adjusted automatically to help move traffic through an intersection. Now that fewer people are driving, synchronized signals mean drivers are getting “all green” waves of signals. A “green wave” of signals tend to encourage people to drive faster than the speed limit. So LADOT has ordered all signals to be set to “nighttime mode,” meaning signals change to red when volumes are really low to prevent green waves of signals and to require people to go slower.