George ratepayer Don Burns asked a number of questions regarding the state of traffic lights in George - out of concern for the safety of drivers, including his own, he says.
The George Municipality responded.
Q: How many traffic lights are there in George?
A: There are 62 traffic intersections with an average of 50 lights per intersection. One special workman (electrician that works specifically with traffic lights) is responsible for repairs.
Q: How many of these traffic lights are defective (light/s not working or missing)?
A: There are currently 9 lights not working at the 62 traffic intersections. The lights that are not in working order cannot create a serious traffic situation as all of the remaining lights still indicate "go" or "stop" to motorists.
Q: What is the lapse in time before the light is fixed? (Careful!)
A: If a defective light is reported, the fault is immediately logged and the department sends out an electrician the very same day to ascertain what the problem is. The time frame of fixing a traffic light depends on the type of problem.
Q: What is the time needed to fix a defective light?
A: This depends entirely on what the issues are. Problems can range and are not limited to faulty lights, cable faults, software faults, etc. A traffic light could take one to three hours to repair while a cable fault can take days to fix. Software faults could take even longer at times, depending on the nature thereof. To repair or reinstall traffic heads and polls doesn't have a time frame as this equipment becomes outdated and out of stock. For stock like this the municipality is reliant on manufacturers locally and abroad to procure the correct equipment.
Q: Who is responsible for damage if an accident is caused by a defective traffic light?
A: If traffic lights at an intersection are defective, legislation dictates that motorists should use the intersection as a four-way stop as stated in the K53 rules. As a result, the motorist will be responsible for an accident caused.
Q: Which department is responsible for repairs?
A: The electrotechnical services directorate is responsible for repairs of traffic lights, within the restrictions of a budget that falls under the directorates of civil engineering services and protection services.