Traffic lights functioning again after outage across parts of San Francisco

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Traffic lights were reported to be back on after failing sporadically across San Francisco Tuesday afternoon. (KGO-TV)

A massive traffic light malfunction on San Francisco streets Tuesday as hundreds of signals were flashing red during the latter end of the commute, lasting for hours.

It was a "watch out then walk" type of morning for pedestrians.

Shortly after 9 a.m. towards the tail end of the commute traffic lights began flashing red.

The first big impact was the signals on Third Street and The Embarcadero. Then different parts of the City including heavily travelled roads were affected.

By 11 a.m. the malfunctioning lights were creating problems across the City.

The South of Market area, Lombard Street corridor and Van Ness Avenue were all affected.

Paul Rose, spokesman for the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency said, "The network that controls the traffic signals throughout the City partially went down for about 200 traffic signals."

The SFMTA called in all its field crews to manually reset utility boxes at each signalized four way intersection.

Rose said it was a massive task. "On this scale, I'm not sure the last time it happened," said Rose.

Meantime, the power failures created uncertainty and even danger to drivers and pedestrians alike.

Ryan McCaig and Lexie Drab are tourists from Canada.

"People were ripping through. You had to be careful," said McCaig.

"Everybody was friendly but a little bit of honking," Drab said.

Drivers complained of missing appointments and being late for work because of the flashing red lights.

"You just have to be careful to go across or else you're gonna get into an accident. You hit them or they hit you so," one passenger said.

But for some they had seen worse.

"It was fine. I used to live in China and that was way worse," one woman said.



The non-functioning lights were seen at the following locations:

  • Lombard Street through the Marina District

  • Near AT&T Park

  • Howard and 5th streets

  • Castro and Market streets

  • The Embarcadero at the Bay Bridge

  • Kearny Street and Bush streets

They were also reportedly not working at the intersections of:

  • 6th and Mission streets

  • 13th and Market streets

  • Folsom and 6th streets down to Folsom & Hawthorne

AlertSF issued a warning to residents that traffic lights were malfunctioning in multiple locations.

Drivers should treat non-functioning stop lights as four-way stops. The San Francisco Department of Emergency Management reminded residents that they should call 911 to report any emergencies.

If you were in San Francisco and saw a non-functioning traffic light and safely took a picture, tag your pics or videos #abc7now on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook and we may show them online or on TV.

Before you head out to your car, be sure to check out the ABC7 traffic maps for real-time information to help you navigate through traffic jams.

Related Topics:
traffictraffic delaypower outagedrivingroad safetysan francisco countySan Francisco
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