Q The missus and myself have been wondering for quite some time what the deal is with red rear turn signals vs. amber. Has this been brought up before? If not, could this be a topic for some good ole-fashioned Roadshow debate?

Brian Durbin

San Jose

A Sure can. But what are your thoughts?

Q My thought concerning what color is best -- amber or yellow. I have lost count as to how many times that I have not seen the blinking of a red rear turn signal, LED or incandescent, as it is washed out by the sun. Once I realize that the other driver wants over, I usually slow down and let them change lanes, if safe to do so.

What’s better for signaling turns, amber or red?
What's better for signaling turns, amber or red? (Mercedes-Benz USA)

But I can't help but wonder if the other driver wonders why I'm waiting so long to let them in. Why isn't yellow the official color of rear turn signals? And what can be done to make it the official rear turn signal color?

Brian Durbin

A For years, there has been mixed data on which color is safest. The latest National Highway Traffic Safety Administration study suggested that amber has an edge in terms of safety. As a result of its findings, NHTSA recommended that amber be used for turn signals on all cars in the U.S. It is the standard in Europe. Stay tuned.

Q Just as the Prius bashing seems to have died down, I'm afraid the Nissan Leaf will take its place. I'm not complaining about the occasional Leaf doing 50 mph on the freeway trying to max out the miser meter, but rather, the Leafs driving around with their headlights off during dawn and dusk to eke out an extra mile.

Sure, it may save a few watt-hours, but it is unsafe and probably illegal. They don't even have daytime running lights on. Anyone else notice this phenomenon?

Ken Nishimura

Fremont

A A few others have made similar comments. In the 1980s, it seemed BMW drivers were the most despised. In the '90s, SUVs were No. 1 on the hate list, followed by Prius owners in the past decade.

Are Leaf owners next? I don't think so, as they are just one group of a growing number of electric car owners. ChargePoint, a Campbell-based company with the nation's largest electric vehicle charging station network, rates the Bay Area as the top region in the country for EV owners, followed by Seattle, San Diego, Austin, Texas, and Honolulu. While Los Angeles has the most total EV drivers (more than 17,000), the Bay Area is tops per capita with nearly 15,000 EV drivers and nearly 4,000 stations.

Q Since I'm so good about complaining, thought I'd send a nice email.

I recently drove the newly paved portion of Bird Avenue between Alma and Willow streets in San Jose. Amazingly smooth! I've been a Willow Glen resident for over 35 years and honestly can't remember a time when that portion was this drivable. I'll bet the residents are super happy that all that construction is finally done.

Gay Rose

San Jose

A Almost done. Portions of Bird will be closed to through traffic from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. through February for a storm sewer project.

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