Stop Signs and Traffic Signals
Each year, the City receives many inquiries about installing stop signs or traffic signals as a way to reduce speeding. However, overuse tends to reduce their effectiveness. Our experience has shown that simply improving the intersection visibility by prohibiting parking near the intersection is often more effective in reducing traffic accidents.
By state law, the City of Flagstaff refers to the Manual On Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD), for installation policies. This manual:
- Dictates the size, shape, and color of all traffic signs
- Contains guidelines for installing signs and thus creates uniformity from state to state
Before installation of traffic control devices, the City of Flagstaff must identify:
- Traffic and pedestrian volumes
- Accident history
- Unusual conditions present at an intersection, such as hills and curves
Part of the installation process is deciding what to install. The City of Flagstaff uses two types of traffic signals:
- Fixed time - set for average conditions and change at predetermined time intervals
- Traffic actuated - timing is adjusted to optimize traffic flow at the intersection
Along major arterials, which have several traffic signals spaced at periodic intervals, the traffic signals are usually synchronized to provide coordinated movement along the major street.
Public understanding of the function of stop signs and traffic signals is one of the most critical elements in reducing speeding and traffic accidents. The City of Flagstaff takes our role in solving traffic problems very seriously, but the burden of safety rests with the motorist. The City receives hundreds of citizen requests per year, so please be patient. We will respond after carefully evaluating your request.