Westminster police, state officials know stoplight on Main Street keeps going out; they're trying to fix it

Jon Kelvey
Contact ReporterCarroll County Times

Despite having a traffic light, the intersection of Main Street and Md. 27, in downtown Westminster, was functioning as a four-way stop Tuesday morning. Again.

“It’s been going on for about a month now. It goes from a regular traffic signal to a flashing red and yellow,” said Capt. Scott Peter, with the Westminster Police Department. “It’s a pain.”

After about a week without problems, the light malfunctioned on Sunday, around 3:30 p.m. Monday and again around 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, according to Peter.

As the police department noted in a March 4 Facebook post, the traffic signal is the property of the Maryland State Highway Administration, which has sent a technician out multiple times to fix the light, which has so far resisted all solutions.

“They send a signal tech out and the signal tech usually comes within the hour to fix it,” Peter said. “It looked like it had been fixed for five days where we didn’t have any issues, and then on Sunday it started acting up again. They are aware, they are doing their darndest — it’s just trying to figure out exactly what is going on.”

It’s a complicated enough problem that the State Highway Administration has also brought BGE on board to help troubleshoot, according to SHA spokeswoman Shantee Felix.

“At that location, there is an intermittent conflict problem, which means the signal is going into flash detecting loss of color,” she wrote in an email. “MDOT SHA has the power company monitoring power there. Additionally, special equipment has been installed to provide more information about the issue.”

“It malfunctioned again today and I called in to state highway’s SOC, which is their state command center,” Peter said. “That’s when they advised me today that BGE has put a monitoring device at the intersection to further determine what exactly is going on. So everyone is aware and making this a priority.”

More details on that BGE project were not immediately available Tuesday, according to spokesman Richard Yost.

In the meantime, while the troubleshooting continues, Peter said people should still feel free to call the Westminster Police Department at 410-848-4646 should they notice it is out.

“We are putting up stop signs every time it goes out to try and help people,” he said. “Line of sight is an issue east and west on Main Street we know, so we just ask people to be cautious and do their best to work through this.”

jon.kelvey@carrollcountytimes.com

410-857-3317

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