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Tuesday, August 9, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesV.I. Answer Desk: Turning Left at Mandela Intersection

V.I. Answer Desk: Turning Left at Mandela Intersection

Source reader Rik Blyth contacted The Source with yet another valid question regarding St. Thomas traffic lights.
Blyth writes: “The relatively new Mandela Circle intersection has a ‘sort-of left turn’ coming from Pueblo going towards Havensight. I’ve treated it as a left turn and made a full stop on red and then proceed if traffic from the right is clear.
"However, others treat it as a straight intersection and sit at the red light waiting for it to turn green. What is it considered legally?”
Blyth also pointed out that there is a similar issue at the new intersection just beyond Yacht Haven Grande when traveling onto Waterfront Drive.
V.I. Public Works Commissioner Darryl Smalls was happy to help clear up any confusion regarding the new stoplights. According to Smalls, as long as there is no sign stating “No Left Turn On Red,” it is proper procedure to come to a full stop and then proceed left if traffic is clear.
Neither of the two stoplights in question have a sign prohibiting a left turn on red, although it is difficult to tell at the Mandela Circle intersection due to the abundance of campaign signs posted there.
Blyth also inquired as to the feasibility of replacing those two solid red lights with flashing lights as a way of letting drivers know to stop and then proceed.
According to Smalls, that entire project is still under the auspices of the Federal Highway Administration. Once the roadway project has been officially completed, the traffic lights at those locations will then be the responsibility of Public Works.
“Once we have been given control of those roadways,” said Smalls, “I will gladly bring the suggestion of flashing red lights to the department’s design team for consideration.”
So to those of you who have been sitting at those lights waiting for them to turn green (as this Source reporter has watched many people do while researching this question), look to your right and if the road is clear, step on that gas pedal.

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Source reader Rik Blyth contacted The Source with yet another valid question regarding St. Thomas traffic lights.
Blyth writes: “The relatively new Mandela Circle intersection has a 'sort-of left turn' coming from Pueblo going towards Havensight. I've treated it as a left turn and made a full stop on red and then proceed if traffic from the right is clear.
"However, others treat it as a straight intersection and sit at the red light waiting for it to turn green. What is it considered legally?”
Blyth also pointed out that there is a similar issue at the new intersection just beyond Yacht Haven Grande when traveling onto Waterfront Drive.
V.I. Public Works Commissioner Darryl Smalls was happy to help clear up any confusion regarding the new stoplights. According to Smalls, as long as there is no sign stating “No Left Turn On Red,” it is proper procedure to come to a full stop and then proceed left if traffic is clear.
Neither of the two stoplights in question have a sign prohibiting a left turn on red, although it is difficult to tell at the Mandela Circle intersection due to the abundance of campaign signs posted there.
Blyth also inquired as to the feasibility of replacing those two solid red lights with flashing lights as a way of letting drivers know to stop and then proceed.
According to Smalls, that entire project is still under the auspices of the Federal Highway Administration. Once the roadway project has been officially completed, the traffic lights at those locations will then be the responsibility of Public Works.
“Once we have been given control of those roadways,” said Smalls, “I will gladly bring the suggestion of flashing red lights to the department’s design team for consideration.”
So to those of you who have been sitting at those lights waiting for them to turn green (as this Source reporter has watched many people do while researching this question), look to your right and if the road is clear, step on that gas pedal.