Signalling easier driving

Photo: Pixabay.

Traffic light downtime in Joburg has recently been reduced by 55 per cent.

The City of Johannesburg’s MMC for Transport, Nonhlanhla Makhuba, made this announcement on 25 July, praising the implementation of the no-join policy at traffic intersections.

The no-join policy means that Johannesburg Roads Agency’s technicians no longer join old cables when an electrical fault is reported at a downed traffic light, but replace it with a new one. Previously, each join caused electrical weaknesses that made the circuit vulnerable to rain, electrical surges and lightning.

Makhuba said the new policy served to progressively reduce the high incidence of signal downtime at the most critical high volume intersections.

Despite power outages that remain a major contributing factor to downtime, making up half of the daily faults reported, 89 intersections have already been re-cabled and are joint-free. The average time taken to repair faults, excluding faults caused by power outages, has seen a 60 per cent improvement.

Makhubo also said there has also been an 18 per cent reduction in the average number of daily traffic light faults.

READ: Three years, R200 mil to improve traffic signals 

In March, the City allocated an additional R6 million to the roads agency through the mid-year adjustment budget to help get the policy into gear.

“This allocation was also used to improve the JRA’s traffic light fault detection systems, to improve signal timings to reduce congestion, and for security surveillance of critical intersections that are prone to theft of infrastructure such as cables.”

In the new financial year, R45 million has been allocated for the replacement of damaged cables and R30 million for the installation of uninterrupted power supply units at 230 high-traffic volume intersections per year, Makhuba said.

“We are gradually turning the tide on traffic congestion within the City,” the MMC said.

During his first budget speech, the City’s Finance MMC, Dr Rabelani Dagada said that in the next financial year, the City has set itself an ambitious target of ensuring that 90 per cent of traffic-related technical faults are repaired within 24 hours.

Another rather unpleasant part of driving on some of Joburg’s roads, potholes, have also been in the spotlight. R79 million was made available within the new administration’s first budget to fix potholes.

Dagada said that in the next financial year, the City hopes to repair 80 per cent of all reported potholes within seven working days.

ALSO READ: Busy intersection a traffic mess due to potholes 

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Chantelle Fourie

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