Color Blind Drivers’ Perception of Traffic Signals

Color is very important in traffic lights. Red, yellow and green each color has a different meaning. In almost all cases, the red light is at the far left in horizontal traffic lights and the red light is in the top in vertical traffic lights. So color blind people can distinguish which light is on.

Saturday, July 4, 2020 - 22:37

Color is very important in traffic lights. Red, yellow and green each color has a different meaning. Colors help us obey traffic rules when we’re tired and distracted. When you see red light, you know that you need to press the brake pedal.

Color blind people don’t have this luxury. Instead of colors, color blind can only see the lights, which lamp is on and which lamp is off.

In almost all cases, the red light is at the far left in horizontal traffic lights and the red light is in the top in vertical traffic lights. So color blind people can distinguish which light is on.

Modern vertical traffic lights have red at the top and green at the bottom.

In several places in the world, red light is square, yellow light is diamond, green light is round. In some countries, red light is larger than other lights. This makes them easier to distinguish.

In a few countries such as Japan, it uses blue light instead of green light. This solves the most common color blindness problem (lack of red-green color vision).

In many countries, a green light close to blue, called bluish-green, is preferred instead of green light. This solution makes the lamps distinctly distinct.

In the UK, when the light is red and will turn green, the red and yellow light will light up for a short time. This is also a useful hint for color blind people.

Despite all these distinctive examples, color blind have difficulty seeing a distant traffic light at dusk. It is difficult to understand the position of the light because other lights are not lit. He sees only a small light spot in the distance. It may not even be able to distinguish whether it is a traffic light or street light. That’s why color blind people need to be more careful in traffic and slow down as soon as they notice the light.

Emre Yılmaz
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Emre Yılmaz, the founder of Lighting Portal, graduated from Atılım University Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering in 2013, and since then has been involved in the management and product development activities of state-supported projects in the lighting industry. He completed his master's degree at Gazi University Industrial Design Engineering Department and continues his education in the doctorate program of the same department.

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