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Rules of the Road: Driving when traffic lights are out

4:37 PM, Jun 22, 2011   |    comments
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All across Knoxville traffic lights are completely out, or are flashing red and yellow. Many drivers might not remember what to do in these situations.

The Knoxville Police Department encourages everyone to slow down.

Captain Gordon Catlett said his men are stationed at many intersections in Knoxville, but not all are covered like the intersection of Broadway and Edgewood in North Knoxville.

At lights with all of the lights out, many of the drivers are blowing through the intersection. Instead, Captain Catlett said they should treat it like a four way stop sign, "Use extra caution when pulling in to that roadway cause the crossing traffic may not yield to them."

KUB Crews are working around the clock to fix the lights, but police urge you to always pay attention.

"A lot of it requires commonsense application. Be more aware of your surrounding, be expecting the unexpected. While you are out here traveling those road, expect the tree to be down so you are not surprised," said Captain Catlett. 

Bunny Lowe is a local car expert. She said another thing to watch for is debris.

"Always if there is debris in the road, it is good to find an alternate route. Whether it be trees limbs or puddles. Your car is a computer these days," said Lowe.

She said trying to drive over debris on the roadway could end in bad news.

"On top of damaging your wheel or tire, what you want to be concerned about is the things underneath your car that are very very expensive to fix."

Lowe adds if you hit something while you are driving you should stop, pull over and check it out.

KUB said traffic lights are a critical priority. Once they get breakers back online, then traffic lights should start turning on.

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