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Signal Changes Too Soon for ‘2 Cars Per Green’

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Dear Traffic Talk:

On the westbound onramp to the Ventura Freeway at Balboa Boulevard, there is a traffic meter with a light and a sign that reads “two cars per green.”

However, the green light is too short to allow two cars on the freeway without the second car running the red light.

I go with the sign and enter the freeway as the second car regardless of the signal color.

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What is more important, the sign or the meter?

Phil Sniderman, Encino

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Dear Phil:

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When in doubt obey the meter, said Officer Veda Nunn of the California Highway Patrol.

The purpose of the meter is to regulate the flow of traffic onto the freeways and prevent congestion of the onramp.

The light should allow enough time for both vehicles to enter the onramp before it turns red.

Signals are timed and placed by Caltrans.

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If, however, a meter has a faulty timer, Caltrans, the California Department of Transportation, would be the agency to handle its replacement.

To report a problem with a state freeway or onramp call Caltrans at (213) 897-3656.

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Dear Traffic Talk:

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If you are traveling in the carpool lane and you see a police or a Highway Patrol car coming up on you with lights flashing, you obviously have to cross the double yellow lines to get out of the way.

After the emergency vehicle has passed, are you then allowed to cross back over the double yellow lines to regain your position in the carpool lane?

Debbie Nedd, Newhall

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Dear Debbie:

No. By law drivers must merge to the right when they see an approaching emergency vehicle using a red light or a siren.

Nunn said that once the emergency vehicle has passed, a car can enter the carpool lane only at the next entry point.

Unless it is an emergency, cars are not supposed to cross double yellow lines.

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Dear Traffic Talk:

I am growing increasingly frustrated and frightened with the public display of anger on the roadways.

Drivers are becoming more aggressive in displaying their anger and using thousand-pound-plus vehicles to do so.

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I would like to know if there is a telephone number and or public agency to which I can report these gross assaulters.

Bobbie Candler, Encino

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Dear Bobbie:

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When a driver is in a tense situation with another vehicle it is best to back off and let the angry driver pass, said Steven Schiltz, an officer with the Los Angeles Police Department Valley Traffic Division.

Drivers can dial 911 and alert the dispatcher that there is a reckless driver on the road.

The dispatcher would then alert any black and white patrol car to keep an eye open for the angry driver.

Traffic Talk appears Fridays in The Times Valley Edition. Readers may submit comments and questions about traffic in the Valley to Traffic Talk, Los Angeles Times, 20000 Prairie St., Chatsworth 91311. Include your name, address and phone number. Letters may be edited, and no anonymous letters will be accepted. To record your comments, call (818) 772-3303. Fax letters to (818) 772-3385. E-mail questions to valley@latimes.com.

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