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FAQ

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General

Traffic Cameras

Message Boards

Traffic Signals

Questions & Answers

General

Where do I find the local bus schedule?

City Utilities maintains the public transportation.  The bus schedule, along with other information about public transportation, can be found by clicking here.  The schedule may also be found by calling City Utilities Bus Dispatch at (417) 831-8782.

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Where are you located?

The Transportation Management Center of the Ozarks is located at 1107 W Chestnut Expressway, Springfield, MO 65802.

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Where do I find information on the City of Springfield?

To find information on the City of Springfield, check out their website here.

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Traffic Cameras

What is the main purpose of the traffic cameras?

Traffic cameras have multiple uses. TMC operators utilize the cameras to verify accidents and/or stalled vehicle locations, as well as to accurately provide lane and roadway closure information to emergency agencies via 911 operations, to DMS signs, and to the local news agencies via OzarksTraffic.com. Traffic signal engineers utilize the cameras to observe traffic flow along the major arterial streets. Traffic signal repair technicians utilize the cameras to verify traffic signal operations. 

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Do the traffic cameras record video?

All of the City of Springfield traffic cameras do not record any video as they are live feed only.  

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Why are some traffic cameras not working?

The TMC operators and signal technicians do their best to keep the cameras working at all times. However, many different issues may cause a camera to not be available on the website or the Mediacom channel. A camera may not be working for any of the following reasons:

• Camera Maintenance, including camera cleaning and tests
• System Failures/Developments, including new or updated software
• Traffic Accidents/Incidents (cameras may be taken offline for privacy issues)
• Camera Failures (when a camera needs repaired it is taken offline to do so)
• Network Fiber Disconnections, including to be relocated within construction projects and for additional connections to be made

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Where can I find video from the square or parking garage security cameras?

The Springfield Police Department maintains all of the security cameras on the square and in the parking garages downtown.  The City of Springfield does not have access to these cameras or any video from them. The phone number for the Police Department is (417) 864-1810.  

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Who controls the red light cameras?

The automated red light enforcement cameras in Springfield were deactivated and removed in March of 2010. There are no plans to resume this project at this time.

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Message Boards

What are DMS boards?

 DMS stands for Dynamic Message Sign. The boards are placed along the side of roadways in strategic locations in and around Springfield.  The DMS boards are used to display helpful information to motorists. The boards display driving safety information, traffic accident information, construction work information, Amber Alerts, and severe weather information.

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Why aren't all the accidents/incidents put on the DMS boards?

The main purpose of the DMS boards is to provide travel information to motorists.  The signs only display accident or construction information that might affect the motorist in their immediate travel direction.  When no emergency information exists, the boards will display driving safety information.

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What is the policy for putting messages on the DMS boards?

 There are certain types of messages that are displayed on the DMS boards. Those messages are displayed in the following order:

• Traffic Accidents/Incidents
• Amber Alerts
• Severe Weather Message Warnings
• Construction Activity Warnings
• Public Service Announcements

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Traffic Signals

How do traffic signals work?

The details of how signals work can be very complex. There are a lot of different things that go into signal timing and making sure traffic flows smoothly and efficiently. To learn about what goes into signal timing, click here to view the  brochure made by the Denver Regional Council of Governments.                                                         

There are three basic types of traffic signals:

  • Pre-timed: The signal serves a certain amount of time to each movement of traffic without using any detection to determine the presence of vehicles at the intersection.
  • Semi Actuated: The main street does not use detection to determine the presence of vehicles, but the side street uses detection.
  • Fully Actuated: Both the main street and side street use detection to determine the presence of vehicles for each movement of traffic.

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What is the purpose of a traffic signal?

A traffic signal is used to assign the right of way to approaching vehicles at certain intersections. Signals are installed at certain intersections to ensure a safe and orderly traffic flow, to protect pedestrians and vehicles crssing the intersection, and to help lessen the severity and frequency of crashes.

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How does the City decide if a traffic signal should be installed at an intersection?

The City of Springfield receives many requests from citizens for installation of traffic signals, and all requests are investigated with a standard process. A traffic signal is installed at an intersection only if the intersection meets certain warrants as required by the MUTCD (Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices) and if a traffic engineer determines that it is appropriate to do so. Traffic engineers take many details into consideration when determining if a signal is needed, including both effects on surrounding signals and funding availible to construct the signal.

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Why does it take so long to install a traffic signal?

Once it is determined that a location needs a traffic signal, funding for the project has to be established. Once funding has been established, plans and construction specifications have to be prepared. In preparing these, many details about the intersection site must be taken into consideration, including utility locations which involve other companies. Once the plans and specifications have been developed, a contract must be prepared by the City and bid on by contracting firms for installation of the signal.

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Who do I contact when a traffic signal is malfunctioning?

If a traffic signal is believed to be malfunctioning, call the City of Springfield at (417) 864-1010 or MoDOT at (417) 895-7600.

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What should I do if the traffic lights at a signal are all dark?

Dark traffic lights usually indicate a power outage. Slow down when approaching the signal. If law enforcement personnel are present, always obey their directions. If there are no law enforcement personnel, drivers are required to treat the intersection as a four-way stop. Use extreme caution and proceed through only when you receive the right of way.

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Why aren't the traffic signals coordinated?

Many traffic signals in the city are coordinated, but it may not seem that way due to many factors. Even traffic signals that are coordinated cannot be timed perfectly because of things like the amount of vehicles on a road, vehicles approaching in all directions, the space between intersections and even uncontrolled driver speeds. Traffic engineers examine the circumstances very carefully and attempt to design the best signal timing for the traffic signals.

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How does a traffic signal detect the presence of a vehicle?

There are two types of detection that are used by the City of Springfield, inductive loop detectors and video detection. The inductive loop detectors are placed in the roadway in each lane at the stop bar. THe loop sizes differ depending on the intersection. WHen a vehicle is over a loop, the loop detects the metal and lets the signal controller know that there is a vehicle present. VIdeo detection consitst of a video camera mounted on the traffic signal arm and pointed toward the lanes of traffic entering the intersection. THose cameras can determine when a vehicle is approaching or stopped in each of the lanes for that particular direction. Most signals in the city have one of these types of detection. If there is a problem with the detection at an intersection, note the street, interescting street, lane, and time of day; contact the City of Springfield at (417) 864-1010.

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Why doesn't my vehicle get detected at traffic signals?

If the vehicle detection at the intersection is a loop in the roadway, the loop can only detect a vehicle that passes over it. Be sure to stop at the traffic signal with the front the the vehicle at the stop bar (the thick white line crossing the lane). If a vehicle is stopped before the loop or pulls up too far passed the loop, the vehicle will not be detected. Some vehicles, such as bicycles or motorcycles, even stopped over the loop, may not have enough mass to trigger the loops. Sometimes the loops or even video detections do not function properly. If it apperas a loop or video detection is not working proprerly, contact the City of Springfield at (417) 864-1010.

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