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New TxDOT safety devices on area roads

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Texas drivers may soon be seeing changes on the road. The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) is rolling out three new safety devices that will be incorporated throughout the state in the coming months.

One of these changes is an Automated Flagger Assistance Device, aimed at keeping construction workers off the street.

"We have three sets of them in the district already," said Paul Braun, the TxDOT spokesperson in Amarillo.

He told us the automatic flagger will be operated by a construction worker using a remote control. The device will signal drivers with different signs and motions when they are approaching a construction site.

To further improve the safety in construction zones, temporary rumble strips will be used. Braun described them as rubber strips, similar to small speed bumps. There purpose is to alert drivers when they are approaching road work.

Adjustments to traffic signals is the final change drivers may soon be seeing. A flashing yellow arrow may be added to some street lights. The arrow would help indicate that traffic is allowed to turn left but only after yielding to oncoming traffic.

Jerry Bird, the Amarillo Traffic Engineer, told us there are no immediate plans to start using these lights, but it is a possibility in the future.

"If we have a lot of accidents where people are making bad selections with regard to the gap in the opposing traffic on the left turn movement, then it's possible we would swap out the five lens head for the four lens head at that location," he said.

Braun told us the changes will help improve the safety on the roads for drivers and construction workers all across the state.

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