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Traffic Lights outside Co-Op, Forest Hill
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Mr_Numbers


Posts: 508
Joined: May 2012
Post: #1
24-10-2013 09:20 AM

[Split from "Traffic lights Dartmouth Road/London Road" -admin]
___

I believe Spielberg has already bought the rights and Tom Hanks and George Clooney are trying to out-audition each other to play you, Deano.

But for the sequel, do you think you'd be able to exert the same sort of magic on the south circ? 6.45 this morning (when sensible people should still be sleeping or at least be in the kitchen eating toast) and the traffic was backed up from the lights opposite the Coop to the Railway Telegraph. Once we made it to the station London Road seemed fine.

I noticed the other day that those lights at the Coop have a strange sequence: 25 seconds red, 15 seconds green, 25 seconds red, 80 seconds green, 25 seconds red, 15 seconds green..... (so you can work out how long I was stuck in traffic watching traffic lights!)

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rshdunlop


Posts: 1,111
Joined: Jun 2008
Post: #2
24-10-2013 09:23 AM

Those lights at the Co-op are pedestrian controlled, aren't they? Hence the erratic pattern.

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Mr_Numbers


Posts: 508
Joined: May 2012
Post: #3
24-10-2013 09:29 AM

You could be right. I never really believed that those buttons did anything except give pedestrians a spurious sense of control, but there might be something in that. Still seems odd that the traffic would be that backed up that early in the morning.

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rshdunlop


Posts: 1,111
Joined: Jun 2008
Post: #4
24-10-2013 10:34 AM

Remember that set of lights is purely a pedestrian crossing, it is not controlling the traffic out of any other roads, so of course it is purely operated by pressing the button.

On more complex junctions where the green man is programmed to come at a certain point in the sequence it is often automatic at peak times, then switched to manual at off peak times.

I love the idea of TfL manufacturing, transporting and installing pedestrian controls purely as an elaborate hoax. Smile

Meanwhile, this still doesn't explain why the traffic was tailed back so far this morning.

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Mr_Numbers


Posts: 508
Joined: May 2012
Post: #5
24-10-2013 10:48 AM

Maybe it was a parade trying to cross the road - one clown at a time.

I was forgetting that it's pedestrian-controlled because a side-effect of that is that it does, in fact, help traffic turning right out of Perry Vale onto the eastbound A205.

However, you're right of course because that traffic has no lights controlling it. They just have to wait for a pedestrian to push the button then obey the 'No left turn' sign so that they don't express their gratitude to those button-pushing pedestrians by running over them.

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rshdunlop


Posts: 1,111
Joined: Jun 2008
Post: #6
24-10-2013 11:30 AM

I think the odd left-hand turn would be permissible if it took out a clown. I don't like clowns.

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IWereAbsolutelyFuming


Posts: 531
Joined: Oct 2007
Post: #7
24-10-2013 01:32 PM
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rshdunlop


Posts: 1,111
Joined: Jun 2008
Post: #8
24-10-2013 01:35 PM

Which is exactly what I said...

Pedestrian only crossing - yes, the button works

Road junctions - automatic during the day, button works at night.

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Fandango


Posts: 89
Joined: Nov 2008
Post: #9
25-10-2013 10:39 AM

There is definitely some miss-timings occurring near the Co-Op.

This morning there was yet another queue up to the crossing extending back to the Brockley Rise junction.

Conversely the traffic flowing to the other side of the lights from Waldram Place/Perry Vale into south circular was very clear (unusually so).

It seems the crossing button is triggering the lights too fast. Every time it's pushed it swiftly stops traffic. Rather than adhering to 'normal' intervals.

Perhaps the lights have been adjusted to free traffic on Perry Vale, and maybe they've been adjusted too far?

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Sherwood


Posts: 1,347
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #10
25-10-2013 11:04 AM

Sometimes the intention is to slow down traffic.

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Mr_Numbers


Posts: 508
Joined: May 2012
Post: #11
25-10-2013 11:20 AM

If that's their intention, then they score top marks, gold star and employee of the month - 'cause it's working! Grr!

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rshdunlop


Posts: 1,111
Joined: Jun 2008
Post: #12
25-10-2013 11:49 AM

If it seems to be an ongoing issue, perhaps someone should take a leaf out of Deano the Magnificent's book and email TfL, detailing exactly what the current timings are and how it is affecting the traffic.

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Mr_Numbers


Posts: 508
Joined: May 2012
Post: #13
25-10-2013 01:08 PM

I think I'm building up to that! The timings seemed odd at first (sitting in the traffic way back in the distance) but then I got the impression from this discussion that that junction was entirely controlled by pedestrians.

However, having sat in the Coop car park this morning, it appears that the lights can turn red without a pedestrian in sight - presumably to allow vehicles out of Perry Vale, but then we're back to the notion that the timings seem odd.

Okay, notebook, pencil, stopwatch and cunning disguise all prepared. Will hide behind the recycled clothes bins at the Coop and monitor the timings some day soon.

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Mr_Numbers


Posts: 508
Joined: May 2012
Post: #14
29-10-2013 06:41 AM

I'm not usually out and about quite this early (usually more like 7.10am) so I was surprised at how bad the traffic was at 6.10am, when things should have been flowing smoothly. So I sat in the Co-op car park and counted. Here's my submission to TfL's website...


The timing of the traffic lights at the junction of the A205 South Circular and Perry Vale SE23 (opposite the Co-op store) seems completely wrong and is backing up traffic during the morning rush hour. This set of lights is a pedestrian crossing though it also allows traffic to exit Perry Vale and turn right onto the A205. However, I have noticed in recent weeks that the lights are at red for longer than they are at green, which backs up the traffic excessively and unnecessarily. The situation is so bad that I've now just watched and timed the lights - 06.15am 29/10/13. Here are the approximate timings:
Green 18 seconds
Red 25 seconds
Green 10
Red 25
Green 13
Red 25
Green 15
Red 25
Green 10

This pattern seems excessively oriented towards red, at a time when the A205 traffic is building up. Please note: AT NO POINT IN THIS CYCLE DID ANY PEDESTRIAN APPEAR OR PUSH THE CROSSING BUTTON.
Please re-examine the settings for these lights. I have been told on SE23.com that the traffic backs up to Brockley Rise and beyond.
Very many thanks.


A reply within 10 working days, the website tells me.

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hillwalker


Posts: 19
Joined: Oct 2007
Post: #15
29-10-2013 09:50 AM

As someone who uses these lights on a daily basis as a pedestrian I can confirm that something has definately happened to them in the last few weeks as they are now very pedestrian friendly. There used to be a good minute wait upon pressing the button, at the moment they are stopping traffic without any one pressing the button. Great for my morning walk to the station, not so good when I'm driving past. I'm guessing this can be easily fixed if TFL pay attention to your email.

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Mr_Numbers


Posts: 508
Joined: May 2012
Post: #16
29-10-2013 12:10 PM

Thanks, Hillwalker. Always reassuring to know it's not just my imagination!

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Cheeky


Posts: 215
Joined: May 2009
Post: #17
29-10-2013 01:47 PM

Not just your imagination, I've noticed it a couple of times, most recently Sunday midday when it was backlogged round to Topps Tiles, hopefully your mail will get it sorted, good work.

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Mr_Numbers


Posts: 508
Joined: May 2012
Post: #18
05-11-2013 04:29 PM

Exactly one week after emailing TfL, I received this reply.....

Quote:
Thank you for your enquiry regarding the phasing at the traffic signal at the junction of Waldram Crescent, Waldram Park Road and Perry Vale. I was sorry to learn of the delays you experienced at this junction.

In managing Londonís traffic signals, we seek to safely balance the needs of motorists, pedestrians and cyclists within a heavily used network with competing demands.


And you probably start thinking, Oh, yeah. I know where this is going. But then!

Quote:
An engineer has investigated your enquiry and we can confirm that there was a fault with the push button detection unit. This fault caused the pedestrian stage to be demanded regardless of a pedestrian pushing the button. This fault was reported and has been resolved.

Furthermore a request has been made to increase the minimum green time to traffic at this junction, and engineers will continue to monitor the signals once this change has been made to ensure the correct balance is in operation at the signals.

Once again thank you for taking the time to highlight you concerns to us and we hope you find these changes help alleviate the problems you experienced. If I can be of further assistance please respond to this email, if you prefer to talk to someone please call xxxx xxx xxxx.

Yours sincerely

Stuart Towne

Customer Service Adviser
Transport for London Customer Services


Result! Thumbsup Thanks to Deano for the inspiration to actually try to do something! I have noticed a difference in these lights over the last few days so it's nice to know it's not just my imagination.

(Hope you don't object to be blotting out his phone number. Seems unfair to post it on a public forum though I know no one who is actually active on se23.com would take unfair advantage.)

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michael


Posts: 3,196
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #19
05-11-2013 04:44 PM

Well done Mr_Numbers (and well done TfL).

Knowing how you like numbers I think you should be renamed 'Deano II' in the film of your life - 'the continuing saga Forest Hill's own answer to Falling Down'.

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Perryman


Posts: 809
Joined: Dec 2006
Post: #20
05-11-2013 04:54 PM

Quote:
Furthermore a request has been made to increase the minimum green time to traffic at this junction


Oh dear. That presumably means they intend to increase the maximum red time wait for local pedestrians in favour of the through traffic.
This is not a SE23 victory. At all.

Although to be fair, they have disabled one of the pedestrian red man lights, to make up for it.

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