HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - When driving on the highway at a decent speed, the last thing you want to do is slam on your brakes to stop at a light just for one car to move through an intersection.
But that's the situation at the intersection of US 231 and Hwy 36 -- and it's driving people crazy.
"We've looked at that intersection several times and have found no issues with the signals or the timing or the detection. Everything there is functioning properly," said ALDOT Spokesperson, Seth Burkett.
US 231 is set to receive the green signal by default. "Alabama 36 receives green signal only by detection," said Burkett.
That's because US 231 has more than 35,000 cars traveling on it daily, while Hwy 36 has just a mere 6,000.
So when the occasional car pulls up to the light, it is detected and within a few seconds, the light turns red for oncoming traffic and the single car on Hwy 36 is given the green light. "They receive a minimal amount of green time, a very small amount. In that cycle, most of the green time goes to US 231," said Burkett.
Burkett says they've been out there several times. “They are constantly looking at it to see if there is any way they can tweak it."
They have even added a delay to the light. He says it's the best that can be done.
The alternative? "The alternative would be a cycle that still would contain time for Hwy 36, so US 231 would stop at time and wait for US 36 to get a turn signal."
But the catch? The light would turn green for US 36 and no cars waiting to turn.