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How did I not know such a device existed?!?!?!?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by LajoieT, Apr 18, 2006.


  1. LajoieT

    LajoieT I won't let your shadow be my shade...

    Oct 7, 2003
    Western Massachusetts
  2. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Supporting Member

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    I saw that story. If the guy was only smart with the device, he could have used it forever. The article mentioned that he used it at the same lights at the same time every day. What a doofus.

    P.S.....maybe Cheezer can get some for us. :D

    -Mike
     
  3. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Yep, something similar to them is installed on many emergency vehicles. Sensors are located in traffic lights.

    If you flicker your high beams, sometimes it works too. I've been known to do this late at night at home. Doesn't affect anyone, I just refuse to run a red and it's pointless to wait.

    And yes, they're illegal.
     
  4. Diggler

    Diggler

    Mar 3, 2005
    Western PA
    I've seen them and didn't know they worked. I thought it was a scam.

    I bet they're going to get REAL popular now that a news article's been published about how they really DO work as advertised.
     
  5. SuperDuck

    SuperDuck

    Sep 26, 2000
    Wisconsin
    You just got snope'd. It's like getting Punk'd, but I'm not wearing a sideways baseball hat.

    My dad always told me to flash my brights at lights, and whenever it didn't work I would just say, "Oh, this must not be equipped with sensors." When it did "work", it was usually because I had been there for a long time as it was, flashed with impatience, and, behold! The light changed! (Because it just took that long.)

    As far as I know, most lights are on timers or are tripped by magnetic relays beneath the pavement that are activated when your car drives over them. (You can see the rectangular cutouts as you approach some intersections.)
     
  6. thank God for snopes.
     
  7. Ty McNeely

    Ty McNeely

    Mar 27, 2000
    TX


    Yes, but the infrared devices used by emergency vehicles overrides the timers or the sensors. That's the point---to get the emergency vehicles to wherever they're going faster.
     
  8. correct, but flashing your headlights won't do anything to change the light.
     
  9. Ty McNeely

    Ty McNeely

    Mar 27, 2000
    TX


    Not necessarily. Not trying to sound like a know-it-all, but my brother was a cop in a city that had these, and you actually CAN change certain ones by flashing your lights. Not all of them are the same, as some of them use infrared beams and others just use strobe beams. In my hometown, all ambulances had a forward-facing strobe for this very reason.
     
  10. SuperDuck

    SuperDuck

    Sep 26, 2000
    Wisconsin
    I understand this. My comments were regarding the ability to flash your brights to change the lights.
     
  11. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    You're right, but I do believe older designs worked off of flashing light, not infrared. The chief of police in my town confirmed this.
     
  12. SuperDuck

    SuperDuck

    Sep 26, 2000
    Wisconsin
    Fair enough!
     
  13. fookgub

    fookgub

    Jun 5, 2005
    Houston, TX
    Did he mention that in all likelyhood the lights transmit a code modulated onto a carrier signal, and the carrier switches faster than your high beams can?
     

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