MANILA - Critics Argue SMART Traffic Lights Not Working : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Fair Use: For Education and Research Purpose Only Binay defends SMART traffic light system

May 18, 2000


After being criticized, Metro Manila Development Authority chairman Jejomar Binay defended yesterday the P1.5 billion SMART traffic lights installed in key points in the metropolis.

Binay responded to criticisms that the system has certain defects.

The technology, adapted from the Sydney Coordinated and Adaptive Traffic System (SCATS), uses electronic sensors underneath the roads to read traffic conditions.

Under optimal conditions, the sensors can detect the volume, spacing and speed of motor vehicles and react accordingly to these factors.

Critics of the system argue that SMART traffic lights are not working properly and do not live up to expectations.

Binay explained that so-called "malfunction" was brought about by motorists' ignorance of the mechanism of the SMART traffic lights.

He clarified that motorists should be aware of the white demarcation lines indicating the points where the vehicles should stop as well as the yellow box with an "X" in the middle of the intersection.

When vehicles go beyond specified stopping, the underground sensors will not provide accurate readings. "We should follow traffic rules on the stop line and yellow box or else the SMART traffic lights system will not work in improving traffic flow," Binay said. At present, 280 intersections all over Metro Manila are equipped with SMART traffic lights, of which 190 are already linked to the SCATS Traffic Control Center.

The installations, which started in the fourth quarter of 1997, is expected to be completed by the end of this year. The project involves the installation of a total of 419 SMART traffic lights. -- Marvin Sy


-- (, May 19, 2000

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