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Dear Jon: Too few electronic highway message signs?

By Jon K. Brent, Anchor, jonkbrent@kionrightnow.com
Published On: Jul 18 2014 07:48:08 PM CDT
Message sign

There are 8 of these changeable message signs on Central Coast highways

We’ve seen the electronic message signs along the highways here on the Central Coast. They may warn of an Amber Alert about an abducted child or driving conditions ahead. But for one viewer, it seems there are not enough of them.

CJ asked me, "Dear Jon, why don't we see many of the freeway warning signs around the Central Coast? The only ones I see are southbound 101 in Prunedale and then on northbound 101 near Highway 25.”

I called Caltrans on this and they tell me these signs are known as 'changeable message signs' and their primary function is to direct traffic.

They'll have a traffic warning or an alert from the C-H-P or a Caltrans promotional message such as “Click it or Ticket” or 'Text Wiser.'

So who decides where they go and how many are needed?

The agency tells me that their Traffic Operations department decides where to put these electronic message signs along highways in the state. Their locations are placed at what they call 'decision points' for motorists, so they can decide whether to take a particular route given conditions.

Caltrans also says there are no current plans to add any more of these changeable message signs here on the Central coast.

So for the time being, what you see is what you get.

It's easy to contact me with your question. Email me on this story or at DearJon@KionRightNow.com. Or on social media, Facebook ‘JonKBrent KION’ and Twitter ‘DearJonKBrent.’