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Electronic billboards are digital distractions

Posted: April 20, 2014 2:00 a.m.
Updated: April 20, 2014 2:00 a.m.

One certainly wonders what the great minds behind the idea of electronic signs along the freeways running through Santa Clarita are thinking.

As cars and trucks are zooming by at 65 mph or faster, should drivers really be distracted by information on signs flashing at them? Or should they be paying attention to the cars and trucks merging, changing lanes, or simply driving next to them?

The electronic signs flashing important traffic information and Amber alerts are a good thing — placed overhead and visible from quite some distance.

Electronic signs alongside a freeway are merely digital distractions. Even the electronic sign advertising the programs offered at COC and the PAC is sporadically problematic — and this an electronic sign at a city intersection.

People distracted by the crawl of information, or waiting for the information to repeat, do not make their turn or do not go on the green.

Traditional billboards strategically placed within a city are helpful to businesses and are easily viewed.

They combine large, static type and colorful images, usually dedicated to one business, being viewed at slower city-street speeds.

Perhaps an alternative for a polished “look” of the city would be to consider standardization of the size, height, and materials used for billboards around town, along with one electronic sign flashing on the freeway simply saying, “Welcome to Santa Clarita.”



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