The Essex Police Department (EPD) advised the public this past week that there have been traffic signal changes for a couple intersections along the heavily-traveled Susie Wilson Road.

The changes specifically affect the crosswalks spanning Pinecrest Drive and Joshua Way on the Lowe’s side of the street.

When using the push buttons to traverse across Susie Wilson Road, pedestrians will still be in a “protected walk phase” and have traffic stopped at that particular intersection for a brief period of time. However, if walking along Susie Wilson Road and traversing either Pinecrest Drive or Joshua Way near Lowe’s, pedestrians will be doing so in a “concurrent phase.”

With this new format, pedestrians will have a “leading pedestrian interval” before the Susie Wilson Road traffic is given a green light--meaning that people crossing Pinecrest Drive or Joshua Way will have a “head start” to get through the crosswalk. However, they will still need to be cautious and alert for all vehicles making turns through the intersection once the light changes from red.

Motorists who are turning during this phase are required to yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk, but EPD encourages pedestrians to be vigilant and aware of automobiles that are intending to drive across those walkways.

Part of the new system includes separate push buttons which have been installed for each crosswalk. Pedestrians need to push the button that has the arrow pointing in the direction they intend to travel in order to activate the proper walk signals.

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