SAFETY: N.Y. State Thruway Authority uses Doppler-radar signs to stop wrong-way drivers

Technology is hooked to LED warning signs and can alert other motorists

December 05, 2013

The New York State Thruway Authority is trying to give wrong-way drivers a chance to right themselves.

The agency has installed Doppler-radar-enhanced LED signs to alert those moving in the wrong direction before they enter exits in Buffalo and Nyack in Rockland County, N.Y. The signs will be located at the Niagara Expressway (I-190) at the southbound exit 9 off-ramp in Buffalo and at exit 10 on I-87/I-287 in Nyack. Wrong-way accidents have plagued both areas.

After Doppler radar detects a vehicle moving in the wrong direction an LED sign reading “Wrong Way” is illuminated and the rest of the Thruway system is alerted.

“New York is the first state in the nation to utilize this sophisticated technology to enhance traffic safety and save lives,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in a statement. “Last year the New York State Thruway was the safest it has been in its entire 59-year history, and these signs are helping us continue that program in new and innovative ways.”

The New York State Thruway Authority plans on using more Doppler-powered signs in the future. For a video on the use of the signs, click here.