Posted on 01 December 2016.
During a recent student tour on snow plow safety, Tim Fennema of the Kent County Road Commission explains to students about the new green lights they installed on trucks to increase their visibility and enhance safety for both motorists and crews. Photo courtesy of Kent County Road Commission.
To promote enhanced safety during storm response and other road maintenance efforts, the Kent County Road Commission (KCRC) joins state, county and municipal transportation agencies throughout the state in installing green strobe lights on road maintenance vehicles.
When motorists see green strobe lights, they are asked to slow down and be alert—a KCRC snowplow or road maintenance truck is performing work on the right of way.
“Our vehicles generally travel at speeds of 25-35 mph when conducting storm response efforts or other road maintenance activities. The ability for motorists to identify our vehicles quickly improves their own response time in reducing their speed, which provides the necessary space between vehicles and improves safety for both the motorists and our workers,” said Jerry Byrne, KCRC’s Deputy Managing Director of Operations.
Public transportation agencies advocate the use of green lights because they:
*Improve the visibility of authorized public agency trucks while working in the right of way.
*Differentiate a public agency’s vehicles from other private motorists and companies using amber lights.
An example of a road commission truck with green lights while plowing snow. Photo courtesy of Kent County Road Commission.
For the past few years, KCRC has been advocating the use of green strobe lights on road maintenance vehicles. On September 7, 2016, an amendment to the Michigan Vehicle Code, Public Act 16 became effective, giving state, county and municipal transportation agencies the right to use green lights on their vehicles.
“Amber lights are used on vehicles performing all sorts of jobs: mail delivery, refuse pick-up, private plowing, even pizza delivery,” said Jerry Byrne, KCRC’s Deputy Managing Director of Operations. “By combining amber and green lights, public road agencies can differentiate themselves and, hopefully, motorists will learn to equate the green lights with storm response efforts or road repair. We think this will keep motorists, and our crews working along the right of way, safer.”
KCRC has been working with the Michigan Department of Transportation, the County Road Association of Michigan and other local road agencies to spread the word about the implementation of green lights on their road maintenance trucks.
“This winter, motorists will see the green strobe lights throughout the state,” said Jerry, “so it’s important we collaborate to get the message out: green strobe means go slow!”