WASHINGTON, D.C. — On a recent afternoon, I was walking up the street to get a snack around 2:45 p.m. I noted that some technicians had installed some new traffic signals. I even chatted with them a bit and continued on my way.

When I got back, I noticed something unusual about the new signals.

The green arrow on D Street SW westbound was pointing left while 12th Street SW southbound had an active green phase.

That’s a bad crash waiting to happen.

Contacting 311

A parking enforcement officer I flagged down recommend I contact 311. I tried calling first, but none of the menu options seemed to line up well which surprised me. So, my next step was to fill it out online. I provided the photo above and an explanation and received an automated response at 3:09 p.m.

Mixed response

Automated messages were quickly received in my email. By 3:29 p.m. I was informed the issue was resolved. I was skeptical which was warranted. When I left work around 4:40 p.m. I saw the signals being worked on.

A 90-ish minutes turnaround time is fairly good which makes the emails an hour earlier disappointing. “In progress” would have been the appropriate response.

They did a better job than the original installers though — that’s an issue they have to catch.

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