Firefighters Want System To Control Traffic Lights
December 6, 2002
Collier County, FL : When minutes can mean the difference between life and death, firefighters and EMS crews need to respond quickly. But they say Southwest Floridaís heavy traffic frequently slows their response times.
ďIt takes twice as long to get to an incident, from 3:30 to 6 oíclock itís a real bear,Ē said Captain Brian Loewel of the North Naples Fire Department.
According to Loewel, one of the biggest problems is gridlock around traffic lights. When the signalís red, traffic canít move and emergency vehicles canít get through.
Now, Collier Countyís fire and EMS departments want to install devices that will allow the drivers of emergency vehicles to take control of traffic lights. Firefighters say with a push of a button the system can save time and lives. ďIf we could go down the highway and every single light we see turns into a green light, then it just makes our job easier,Ē said Loewel.
County officials say the system would cost about $750,000 to install in every traffic light and emergency vehicle. The fire districts would have to agree to pay that price; they would also have to agree on what systems to buy since they arenít all compatible. Firefighters say despite the cost, the system is worth it.
ďIf you can save a life, even one life by having that on there, I think itís a pretty important thing,Ē said Loewel. Emergency workers hope to start installing the system within a year from now.
For now, firefighters encourage all motorists to move away from approaching emergency vehicles. However, they discourage drivers from running traffic lights. Fire officials say that could lead to an accident and thatís the last thing they want when responding to an emergency.
Story from http://www.winktv.com/
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12-09-2002, 04:18 PM #1
- Join Date
- Apr 2002
- Land of milk and honey.
Firefighters want traffic control system
12-09-2002, 06:02 PM #2
- Join Date
- May 2000
- Wheaton IL
If cost is an issue then start with just a few intersections and just the front line rigs. By us the emergency management started the ball rolling when they looked into a way to get their vehicles through town without having to run hot.
The police and fire department liked the idea and shared the cost. The entire project took 3 or 4 years to finish and everyone agrees that they wouldn't want to live without the opticom now that we have it.
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