Does it seem like the traffic lights in the busiest areas of Baton Rouge are functioning a little more smoothly these days? On July 13, Mayor-President Sharon Weston-Broome announced the start of a new traffic light synchronization program that’s designed to address the significant traffic problems that the city has long endured.

New sensors will be installed in the ground around the traffic lights and intersections involved in the project. These sensors will be able to determine the number of cars at the intersection at any given point. City engineers can then monitor the situation in real time. They can make adjustments to the timing of any traffic lights that will take into account problems like accidents, emergency vehicles, detours and unusually heavy traffic.

As the sensors accumulate more data, they’ll eventually make adjustments on their own. This is expected to be a big improvement over the old process, which involved manually counting vehicles as they passed through certain intersections to obtain traffic data.

While these changes are expected to ease congestion on the streets and reduce travel times by up to 50%, that’s not their only benefit. They’re also predicted to reduce traffic accidents by somewhere between 30% and 50%. Synchronized traffic lights help reduce the temptation that many frustrated drivers have to speed through an intersection to beat the light. They can also reduce the number of “runs on red” that happen.

Motor vehicle accidents can be devastating. If you’re injured, you may be facing a mountain of medical bills and weeks or months of inactivity and lost wages. If you’re in a crash, make sure that you fully explore your legal right to compensation.