Early-morning traffic signals waste gas and add pollution | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Early-morning traffic signals waste gas and add pollution

I understand that the South Lake Tahoe traffic engineers program the traffic lights for optimal traffic flow and safety, but why program the insane two-minute red light stops at 5:30 a.m.?

During my early-morning travels to work during the weekdays eastbound on Highway 50 from Tahoe Keys Blvd., it’s routine to stop unnecessarily at Carson Avenue, Lyons Avenue, Tallac Avenue and, of course, the infamous stop at the Stateline Avenue (border).

In the two decades I’ve lived in South Lake Tahoe, it was my understanding the reason we banned drive-through restaurants was to eliminate excessive exhaust emissions from idling cars; however, as I add up the time idling for red lights, I have to add the max of eight minutes per day to my daily commute just idling. Multiply this by just 5,000 cars per day and you get 66 hours per day for idling cars.

One would think it’s more important to keep the vehicles in a safe speed; however, it appears your speed doesn’t matter as the timer starts once you enter the intersection, so there is no reward to drive the speed limit. Perhaps there is an incentive to speed to avoid the next red light – a very bad practice to get in the habit!

To the traffic engineers; can you please publicly explain your madness?

Gerry Hattendorf

South Lake Tahoe

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