Delaware Roads - DE 72

DE 72

DE 72 SB along the University of Delaware with one of the first HAWK installations along the East Coast. The sign is non-standard, but it makes sense as compared to a regular "signal ahead" sign. The HAWK goes flashing yellow, steady yellow, steady double-red, alternating flashing red, then dark again. Let's review:
* A dark signal is treated as a malfunction, requiring an all-way stop, per the MUTCD.
* Flashing horizontal red is reserved for railroad crossings; double blinkers spaced horizontally are supposed to flash simultaneously instead of alternating.
* Flashing and steady indications should be in separate lenses when they are intentionally part of the same signal sequence. It's hard to see a steady yellow after a flashing yellow.
Right off the bat, the HAWK violates several principles that other signals have to obey. Worse, it says "STOP on red," but that's only for a steady red. Cars can proceed on flashing red if the crosswalk is clear, just like any flashing red blinker. Drivers tend to treat the HAWK one of many ways: stop as soon as the yellow light begins flashing, stop at the proper time (somewhere between steady yellow and red), or just keep going straight through the red; they might start up at the end of the solid red or wait until the end of the flashing red, and they may or may not stop at the flashing red before proceeding if they do go. I haven't seen anyone honking at the misinterpreters, suggesting that everyone is so confused that no one really knows the right way to handle them, so they just guess. While I like the theory of having a signal where you can go as soon as the crosswalk is clear, I think the practice demands that we go back to flashing lights and signs instead of trying to regulate the crossings.

Now gone, this assembly looked pretty on the right but ugly on the left. Business DE 2 no longer exists, as regular DE 2 now comes this way instead of using the DE 4 bypass south of Newark.

On Anna Way, signing traffic to use a jughandle to U-turn via the side street. I'm sure property owners are thrilled about this, especially when they try to exit their development. DE 72 is even more thrilled to be so well represented.

Onto DE 273
Onto DE 2
Back to Delaware Roads
Back to Roads