WAMU 88.5 : News

Traffic Light Computer System Restored In Montgomery County

Play associated audio
Montgomery County suffered some light synchronization problems along the I-270 corridor Wednesday morning.
Montgomery County suffered some light synchronization problems along the I-270 corridor Wednesday morning.

The lights were on Wednesday morning, but overnight storms knocked out the computer system that times them during rush hour periods. The system allows for longer green light cycles to accomodate heavier traffic going in certain directions on certain roads. The outage only affected roads north of the Beltway.

Crews worked all morning and into the afternoon to make sure the lights would be fine for the afternoon rush hour. About half of the 800 traffic lights in the county are timed with the computer system, and the outage affected approximately 200 of them. The county wants to have all 800 lights on the automated system by 2012. When that occurs, a county spokeswoman says large-scale outages like Wednesday morning's should no longer occur.

This outage is different than that of one that occurred two years ago, when the system failed for all roads in the county. That was attributed to a computer error.


A Love Letter To Literature: Reading Gabo In 'The Paris Review'

Gabriel Garcia Marquez died Thursday. It would be hard to overstate the importance of his novels, but author Gustavo Arellano recommends getting to know him in a different medium.

In The Land Of Razor Clams, Dinner Hides Deep Within The Sand

Clam digging satisfies that primeval urge to go out into nature and find free food. And inveterate Washington state clam diggers admit they compete to get their daily limit of 15 clams.

Are Democrats Trying To Energize The Base With The Race Card?

Top Democrats have said recently that some GOP opposition to President Obama and his agenda is based on race. It's an explosive message that might drive Democratic voters to the polls.

Should College Dropouts Be Honored By Their Alma Maters?

From a Top Gun sequel starring drones to Howard University's pick of Puff Daddy as its commencement speaker, the Barbershop guys weigh in on the week's news.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.