The city of Winona will be installing new devices at intersections to increase safety for drivers and the city’s emergency vehicles.
Over the next several years, a number of city intersections will be equipped with traffic preemption devices, which indicate to drivers that emergency vehicles are coming.
Intersections with the devices installed, such as Gilmore Avenue and Hwy. 61 or Sarnia and Franklin streets, can be identified by the presence of a receiver and visual signal or clear floodlight in both directions.
The goal is to give a right-of-way to emergency vehicles traveling toward the intersection.
Winona Fire Chief Curt Bittle said the city has recently been able to begin wholesale updating due to a drop in the price of the equipment and also because MnDOT crews have been installing the electrical hookups for the devices when they reconstruct intersections on roads the state controls.
Bittle says it’s been a work in progress for the past 15 years.
Once installed, a solid flood light indicates an emergency vehicle is approaching the intersection from a different direction, either towards the car or from either side. A flashing floodlight indicates an emergency vehicle is approaching the intersection from behind.
It is anticipated that the Mankato Avenue, Hwy. 61 and Pelzer Street corridors will be finished in 2017.
Installation on Broadway would likely be in 2018 or 2019.