The job of a traffic engineer is to keep pedestrians, bicyclist and motorists moving on the roads in an orderly way. Columbia County Traffic engineers aim to do just that for residents one intersection at a time.
Glen Bollinger, Columbia County Traffic Engineer explains "We're always looking at intersections around the county based on collision reports, based on traffic volumes, citizen complaints. We take all those into account."
Once an intersection causes caution, work on finding an alternate route starts right away.
"The first thing I would do is go out there and put the Scout Video Detection out and get all the numbers at the intersection. The next step would be to check accident reports to see what types of accidents we've had at that intersection," Ron Lampkin, Columbia County Traffic Engineering Analyst adds.
That data is then compiled into sheets like this and steps are taken to correct whatever the problem is determined to be. For example, if there are five or more angle collisions in a one year period, the traffic warrant recommends a traffic light.
Corrections that are part of a bigger picture to maximize efficiency and safety on Columbia County roads.
Lampkin adds "we'll get everything set up. We'll have our cameras put out there. And then, once that is done, now we can monitor everything from here at a central location."
From here, traffic engineers are able to keep track of what's going on at every intersection with a stop light – what they call a corridor. And while traffic signals do help, engineers like to use it as a last resort.
Bollinger says "it's not the answer for everything. It doesn't cure or fix every problem. It comes with its own set of issues as well."
Issues Bollinger and Lampkin work diligently to reduce at stop lights and stop signs throughout Columbia County.
Traffic Engineers say the areas in the county with the most growth are the most traveled. And as issues arise, they are evaluating and trying to solve them.
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