Motorists waiting to get onto Highway 14 eastbound from South 12th Avenue West in recent months may have noticed a longer than usual wait for the traffic light. The pavement traffic loops at this intersection have not been functioning properly and the lights were placed on a timed sequence, regardless of the traffic.
Now, Newton Public Works employees have installed a traffic control detection camera at the intersection. The camera detects the presence of vehicles for eastbound traffic at the intersection and is connected to the traffic signal control cabinet to provide a green signal based on vehicle detection.
Detection cameras are being used because they are less costly than induction loops embedded in the road’s surface. The cameras are used to detect objects, but do not have the resolution to identify license plates or facial features. City Administrator Bob Knabel said the cameras have no video recording capability and are not intended for law enforcement.
The first detection camera was installed in Newton in 2010 for eastbound traffic at First Avenue East at East 17th Street.
John Jennings can be contacted at (641) 792-3121 ext. 425 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.