You know those frustrating moments when you're stuck at a red light, and it feels like forever before it turns green? Or worse, when someone ahead of you is too busy on their phone to notice that the light has changed? Well, researchers might have a solution to make traffic lights a bit more efficient and, possibly, less infuriating in South Carolina.

Edited Getty Images
Edited Getty Images

Adding A New Color To Traffic Lights

According to Traffic Technology Today, researchers are advocating for the addition of a new color to the traditional red, green, and yellow traffic light system: white. But before you start picturing bright white lights at intersections, it's important to note that the color could vary from what we typically associate with white, depending on the state.
Read More: South Carolina People Sick And Tired Of Target's Odd Changes

What Would This New Color Signify?

It's not for regular drivers—it's for the self-driving cars that are becoming more common on our roads. The idea is that when a white light appears at an intersection, it indicates that a self-driving car is present and controlling the flow of traffic. Essentially, it's a signal for human drivers to follow the lead of the autonomous vehicle.

Getty Images
Getty Images

The concept hinges on the ability of self-driving cars to communicate with the traffic light's control system. Researchers conducted simulations to test the idea and found that it could significantly reduce delays at intersections. Although other advantages were less evident, like slight enhancements in overall traffic movement, the primary benefit would be the improvement of traffic transitions, resulting in smoother flow.

Vehicle to vehicle communication. Data exchange between cars.
Getty Images/iStockphoto

When Should I Expect To See These Lights?

Don't expect to see white lights—or "AV lights," as they're sometimes called—popping up at intersections just yet. While the concept shows promise, it's not likely to be implemented immediately. But as technology continues to evolve, it's entirely possible that these new traffic light colors could become a reality down the road, making our driving journey a little bit easier.

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