That is why the National Motorists Association (NMA) has sent an urgent appeal to Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) head Victor Mendez to change current federal guidelines by mandating acceptable yellow-light durations. In a letter dated Nov. 15, the NMA cited specific safety benefits of setting proper traffic signal
“Short yellow lights force many responsible motorists to make split-second decisions that can lead to unwarranted traffic tickets, or worse, intersection collisions,”
The NMA letter highlighted a study that determined a one-second increase in the yellow-light interval reduced intersection collisions by 40 percent. The letter also pointed to an example of a major U.S. city that is deficient in its yellow-light intervals by one second because of inadequate guidelines by the FHWA.
In addition, red-light camera operators use this national standards deficiency to set yellow-light times that frequently don’t give drivers enough time to stop as the traffic light turns from yellow to red.