It may seem like just another traffic light, but there’s a method to the madness when it comes to those ramp meters you’ll find along Nevada’s freeways.
A joint project of the Nevada Department of Transportation and the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada (RTC), freeway ramp meters offer a number of benefits such as:
- Reduced congestion on the freeway
- Steadier traffic flow and more regular travel speeds on the freeway
- Improved motorist safety by helping to reduce crashes associated with high-speed merging
- Smoother merging process for vehicles entering the freeway
Not only do ramp meters provide many benefits, but they’re also easy to use and resemble a traditional traffic light. The only difference is that the ramp meter does not have a yellow light. When approaching the ramp meter, wait at the red light and proceed when the light turns green for your lane. Stay alert because the light may change more rapidly than at a regular stoplight.
The ramps are consistently monitored by RTC’s FAST (Freeway and Arterial System of Transportation) Department to ensure they don’t create traffic congestion on surface streets. As part of its role to monitor and control traffic, FAST also oversees more than 1,600 traffic signals, 750 arterial cameras, 250 freeway cameras, 160 dynamic message signs/active traffic management signs, and 650 freeway traffic flow detectors.
Learn more about these efforts on the RTC website.