'Dynamic left turn' intersection causes more confusion than solutions in Cary

CARY, N.C. (WTVD) -- The new traffic installation expected to save 2,000 vehicle hours per year didn't go so well on its debut, the traffic pattern caused more confusion than solutions.

The traffic pattern change designed to alleviate congestion seemed to confuse most drivers.

"It's too intellectually challenging," said Cary resident Bruce Spader.

RELATED: What is the dynamic left turn coming to Cary and Clayton?

A portable electronic warning sign set up on the shoulder of Tryon Road a quarter of a mile before the Cary Parkway intersection warned drivers about a "new traffic pattern" and to "obey lane control signal."

But drivers told us they didn't understand exactly what that meant; so when arriving at the intersection where there had been two left-turn lanes for years, many drivers ignored the two new lighted signs with a big red X hanging over the right-hand left turn lane.

"I had no idea that's what that meant. The lane is completely open. I wasn't sure at all about that," said driver Sheri Majmundar.

With no physical barrier, other drivers say they too didn't realize the red X's means the right left-turn lane is closed.

Bruce Spader, the Cary resident, said he had read about the change, but knew what to expect, and got in the correct left turn lane.

But as soon the lane to the right of Spader filled up when the light changed, "They were all trying to squeeze over into our lane. That's dangerous."

Spader predicted there will be wrecks because of the change and that the dynamic left turn will be abandoned, but DOT officials aren't going to give up that easily.

They've now changed the warning sign to read "red X lane closed."

In response to reporting on the problems, DOT issued this statement:

"The town of Cary and NCDOT will jointly monitor the intersection to determine how to fine-tune the dynamic left turn system, and we'll make any necessary adjustments. We were expecting there to be a learning curve with the public to use it. We will continue to help educate the public on using the dynamic left turn. Drivers need to pay attention going through this intersection, and they should know that using a de-activated lane is a traffic violation"
Copyright © 2020 WTVD-TV. All Rights Reserved.