Tuesday, June 19, 2018
Transportation

Pinellas Bayway's lane closure sign poorly placed

Q: I live on Tierra Verde and drive on the Pinellas Bayway frequently. The bridge construction has made it a real challenge driving to the beach and back. The eastbound lane closures have been unpredictable and time consuming. To make matters worse, the westbound sign giving notice of the lane closures is located on the I-275 exit ramp at 54th Avenue S. It is impossible to view the sign from the local 54th Avenue traffic lanes. I would like to suggest that the sign be relocated farther west by about 500 feet to enable local drivers to have time to read it.

Len Jurca

We shared this concern and suggestion with the Florida Department of Transportation and they agreed with the observation. "We have a sign at that location and also one directly east of the bridge. We will have the contractor relocate the sign farther west to help the problem," Kris Carson, a representative, told us. Hopefully it has helped.

Q: Every year it seems that some ignorant driver asks you about the headlights in rain laws and every year you go through the rules. One thing you never mention for the people who have daytime running headlights on their cars is that their taillights are not on. When someone is behind a car in the rain that does not have tail lights lit, it is very difficult to see that car through the road spray. Please remind those who have daytime running lights that they only have taillights when they hit the brake pedal, and that might be too late.

John Canncey

This is an excellent point, and with hurricane season ahead of us it is important to reiterate. Unfortunately, many drivers have come to rely on daytime running lights to the degree that they don't give the issue much thought or simply may not realize that they must manually switch their headlights on in order to activate their vehicle's taillamps.

While it may seem that daytime running lights are sufficient in rain or foggy conditions, they aren't. And the issue here is not so much visibility for drivers in rainy weather — it's the fact that other drivers cannot see your vehicle in low-visibility conditions if the headlights and taillights are not properly lit. This overreliance on automatic daytime running lights is a particularly dangerous scenario at dusk and just before sunrise, and another reason to be vigilant about safety when getting behind the wheel.

Barricade watch

• Beginning Monday, expect intermittent lane closures on 49th Street N from 70th Avenue to 86th Avenue in Pinellas Park due to sidewalk construction and the installation of an ADA ramp. Work here is scheduled to run through mid September. Similar work and lane closures on 49th Street N from 38th Avenue to 70th Avenue should wrap up this week.

• Intermittent lane closures and delays with flagging personnel on-site at 86th Avenue N from 94th Street to Starkey Road in Seminole continue during work on a utility pipe replacement. The project is scheduled to be completed in mid August.

• 94th Avenue N is closed to all but local traffic at 134th Way in Seminole while sanitary pipe repairs are ongoing. That work should wrap up this week. A detour route is in place.

• Expect intermittent lane closures and delays on 150th Avenue N and 58th Street with flagging personnel on-site as repairs are made to a damaged storm drain. Work should finish up this week.

Email Dr. Delay at [email protected] to share your traffic concerns, comments and questions. Follow Dr. Delay on Twitter @AskDrDelay. Questions selected for publication may be edited.

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