Basic Traffic Signals

Actually in big countries the installation of traffic signals or commonly named as semaphores or traffic lights are the best way to control the flow of traffic, help enhance traffic safety and prevent accidents. They use a color code standard universal: red - amber/yellow - green.

The traffic lights are installed at road intersections and pedestrian crossing, and their position could be vertical or horizontal. If they are arranged vertically, red is always on top and green on the bottom, in the other case if they are arranged horizontally, red is always on the left and green on the right. In some countries there are timers that accompany the stop-and-go-lights.

Red light

Means you must stop and yield to pedestrians and other traffic, before crossing the marked stop line or crosswalk. While the light is red you may turn right only if there is NO TURN ON RED sign at the intersection.

Yellow light

In some semaphores this color is replaced by the amber color. It means a steady red light will appear soon. You must be prudent and if you are in an intersection slow down and prepare to stop; otherwise look and proceed with caution.

Green light

Means you must go straight, turn left or turn right if the road is clear. But if there are vehicles or pedestrians in the intersection, the priority must be for them.

Drivers must consider these points:
  • In addition to the flashing lights, the flashing arrows help drivers who are turning.
  • In the case of a left-pointing green arrow and green light, you could turn left, go straight or turn right from the proper line.
  • Facing a flashing green the pedestrians must not cross unless they see a pedestrian signal.
  • The left-turn green arrow showed with a red light, permit you turn left from the left-turn lane.
  • The yellow arrow may appear after the left-turn green arrow, is a previous sign to the green light which appear for traffic in both directions. You must not start left turn, otherwise be cautious and complete the turn.
  • The public transit vehicles have the priority in a transit priority signal face to the traffic and pedestrians. The sign on top shows a white vertical bar on a dark background.
  • Don't be surprised when you see separate traffic lights for left-turn or right-turn and feel protected with these signals.
  • When electrical power losses occur, the traffic lights at intersections doesn't work and you noticed blank traffic lights. Please yield the way to vehicles in the intersection and to vehicles entering the intersection from your right. Be prudent.
  • If you face to flashing red or yellow beacon, you must consider that color red means you must come to a complete stop and only when you are safe move to the intersection. But if the color is yellow, drive with caution.