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The longest light in town!

Lawton_7 News has found the longest light.  The Good Morning Texoma crew drove all around Lawton timing the lights to find out which one is officially the longest.  Certainly, everyone had their opinions but, 7 News timed each light, multiple times.  The Morning crew factored in synchronization, sensors and timers and came up with the answer.

The majority of you agree and we tested it.  The longest light in Lawton is Cache and Ft. Sill Blvd.  So why are some lights synched, some timed and some sensored?  We went to lawton's traffic experts to find out.  Jeff Banner and Dave Dixon work for the city of Lawton and take care of all our traffic issues.

Jeff Banner told us that the current system is in place for safety reasons and Dave Dixon said, "Our main goal is to keep up with traffic flow in Lawton, try to make it as streamlined as possible."  That's why some streets, like Gore Boulevard and most of Cache and Lee, are timed and synched. So, you can potentially drive all the way across town without having to stop.

Some intersections, like Cache and Fort Sill Boulevard are timed consistently.  The cycle and wait time always stays the same.  But, other intersections get more complicated because they're sensored to detect how much traffic is on the road.  That's the case for 2nd and Lee, I-44 and Gore, 52nd and Highway 62 and the light at Sheridan and Wal-Mart.   Each of these will be different almost evertime a vehicle is stopped.

So why does it make us so crazy when we hit that red light? Some Lawton resident's thoughts are time crunches, road rage and impatience.  Our traffic experts say patience is the key. Whether your commute leads to all green lights, or you encounter a red light or two.  That extra minute could mean that you are going to get home safely.

Our Good Morning Texoma crew has gathered some tips to help you navigate these lights and make maneuvering through traffic easier.  Our traffic experts tell us there are exactly 73 traffic lights in Lawton most are timed in 120 second intervals.  That's the estimated time it takes for everyone to make it through, and, many of the lights are synched together, like most of Gore and Lee.  On those roads, driving 36 miles per hour will help you make all the lights.   Not only is this convenient for us, but it's important for traffic flow.

For all those drivers out there who think it's better to rush to the next light, the experts told us that you're wasting money.  When you rush to that next traffic light, you use more fuel.

So, 36 miles per hour will help you maneuver those lights. Believe it or not, a NASA engineer designed our traffic system back in 1975. And, we're told that was all part of his plan. But, there's a new plan for the traffic system that will add a new light to Lee Boulevard.

There will be a new light next month at Lee Boulevard and 27th Street next to DHS.  Anyone who has tried to turn east on Lee from 27th knows how tricky that intersection can be.  You may have even seen accidents there.  So it seems like the city is working hard to prevent that from happening by adding this new traffic signal.  More lights are possible and the city is working on an upgraded traffic plan already.  Through the year 2030.

 

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