Here is my effort to collect and preserve traffic light video and audio.
I find it quite interesting when a taken-for-granted piece of everyday life, like a traffic light, is brought to front-and-center attention, either through a discussion, in the news, in a song, or in a commercial. I've compiled a collection of traffic light videos and audio that will continue to grow. And they span quite a wide range throughout history. The earliest ones are from the 1930s while the newest ones are news clips or computer animated shorts.
Lyrics from the droning sounds of Monty Python’s I Like Traffic Lights.
Mr. Rogers is visited by his good friend Mr. McFeely, who shows a video on how traffic signals are assembled. Mr. Rogers then demonstrates his own traffic light. Watch more of the PBS series Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood at Amazon.com
In episode 1146, which originally aired March 8, 1971, Mr. Rogers needs to replace the lightbulb in his traffic light.
Mr. Rogers has his TV audience play a little exercise game of top-middle-bottom with the lights on his traffic signal in episode 1250 of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. Watch more of the PBS series Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood at Amazon.com
In episode 1181 of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, Mr. Rogers lends his traffic light to his good friend, Officer Clemmons. Watch more of the PBS series Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood at Amazon.com
In episode 1460 of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, Mr. Rogers must replace a burned out bulb in his traffic light.
Factory Made features the McCain traffic signals in production from start to finish. Factory Made is no longer airing, but How It’s Made takes its place. Watch it on The Science Channel at www.ScienceChannel.com/tv-shows/how-its-made
CG animated short film Going Green, by Thiago S. Aranha. Made for the Digital Film and Animation MA at the London Metropolitan University.
A clip from Cookie Jar Productions children’s cartoon “Caillou”.
This was a public service announcement video from 1968 explaining to “cross on the green, not in between.”
In “Red Light Green Light”, episode 23 of Season 1 of Bewitched, Samantha has to convince her mother that help is not needed in choosing a traffic light for Morning Glory Circle. Watch Bewitched on Amazon Prime Instant Video.
The excerpt from a 1950s film about careful driving features some old traffic lights and sequences which are non-standard by today’s regulations.
On the 1990s TV show Beakman’s World, someone writes in asking how traffic lights know when to change. Look for the show on Netflix. I thought this show was great and watched it whenever I could, but had never seen this episode. By the way, I have a signal exactly like the one behind Beakman.
Nina and Star on The Goodnight Show demonstrate how to make a traffic light bookmark. The channel is great for toddlers. Visit them at www.SproutOnline.com or check television listings for the Sprout Network.
In season 2 episode 31 “Herman’s Lawsuit”, from the 1966 television series The Munsters, Herman tangles with a traffic light and pedestrian signal while trying to cross the street.It all works out in the end.
One couple teams up on HGTV’s Flea Market Flip to turn a traffic light into a functional and working piece of furniture. I sold a signal to a friend who wanted to do this exact thing.
During the intro to the History Channel’s “The Epic History of Everyday Things” a quick nod is given to the first traffic light and the unfortunate event it was part of.
In 2012, Utah TV station KSL reports on the 100th birthday of Lester Wire’s traffic light design.
Mr. Bean witnesses, what he considers to be, a loophole to get through a red light.
Popeye, Olive Oil, and Whimpy come across more than just a mirage during their journey through the desert.
In 1979, Mattel Games introduced their line of Funtronic Games, including “Red Light Green Light”. I don’t remember if I got this for Christmas or my birthday, but I’ve had it ever since, and it still works.
Clark County, Washington is continuing to replace incandescent traffic and pedestrian signals.
MDOT explains the benefits of the new LED traffic lights that are replacing old technology.
Fellow signal enthusiast John Kates recorded the entire LED conversion of two Crouse-Hinds Type DTs in North Carolina.
Tinkie Winkie the Teletubbie is learning what to do when he comes across a red traffic light.
Parts I and II of “Traffic Signal Systems – Go For The Green” from The U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration. Part I is General and Part II is Technical
Although we never see a traffic light, this episode of The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet chronicles the only-on-TV speed of a traffic light installation at an intersection in town.
Popeye and Brutus fight over Olive Oil for her fare. She inadvertently ends up controlling traffic.
One of the gremlins wreaks havoc with an open controller cabinet at a 4-way intersection with a Crouse-Hinds Type D/DT cluster.
A bizarre video of a traffic light and pedestrian signal that seemingly have minds of their own.
In this local piece, Gainesville, Georgia, traffic signal engineer gets a visit from an “irate” resident who received a ticket for running a red light.
Serious Church News tackles the issue that faulty traffic lights are the work of Satan.
Sponsored by Chevrolet Division, General Motors Corporation, the 1937 Handy (Jam) Organization short film Seeing Green looks inside of the electro-mechanical "brain" of the traffic light.
A design team makes over a transportation-themed bedroom for some kids on A&E’s now-cancelled show Find and Design.
A 4-way traffic light is front and center in this drag racing scene in Universal's The Fast and the Furious.
Footage that I personally shot of the famous Tipperary Hill up-side-down traffic light in Syracuse, New York in the winter of 2005. This signal has red on the bottom and green on the top, the only signal like it in the country. Learn more about it by reading more about it on Wikipedia.com.
The mascot of this school is a traffic signal that thinks he's kind of funny.
HGTV’s Offbeat America, a show that highlighted the owners of eclectic homes and collections, featured Signalfan John Rietveld.
Late 1960s Sesame Street segment by the Children’s Television Workshop explaining how good it is that we have traffic lights.
The City of Eugene controls more than 225 intersections with traffic signal devices.
Mike and Frank from American Pickers are picking in upstate New York when the come across the bones of an old Crouse-Hinds dummy signal. When the signal makes it back to Iowa, “Signalfan” John Rietveld is called to offer his expertise along with a photo from collector “NevadaWillis”. See more of American Pickers on The History Channel.
American Pickers grabs a nice 3-way Crouse-Hinds beacon needing a little TLC. One thing he didn’t notice was the missing reflector in the side he opened up. Also, traffic lights all used standard medium base bulbs, albeit a different wattage depending on the size or era of the signal.
From Disney-Pixar’s “Mater’s Tall Tales”, Mater and his new friend wreak havoc around Radiator Springs, including messing with one signalfan trying to enjoy his evening.
ABC News reports on a problem unique to the newer, energy-efficient traffic lights that only happens in the colder winter months plagued by snow.
A wind-twisted traffic light is to blame for the death of a motorcyclist in Detroit, Michigan.
In 2013, this Japanese inventor developed a way to avoid the sun phantom effect on traffic lights.
Leo the Truck builds a traffic light to help get through an intersection.
This clip from the 1950s film called “Law and Social Control” features a couple of old signals, one with command lenses.
Canadian TV show "Acme School of Stuff" showing how mechanical controllers work to run traffic lights.
An interview with one of the engineers from the Boulder, CO signal lab.
This video highlights how the work zones are safer because of these portable traffic signals.
In season 3 episode 13 of the 1995 TV show "The Adventures of Pete & Pete", bus driver Stu is stuck at a seemingly never-ending red light.
We get a glimpse as to what the night brings in the show "The Amazing World of Gumball".
A Crouse-Hinds Type D/DT traffic light in a clip from New Line Cinema’s film The Notebook. I met Rachel McAdams on the set of a film I worked on and I have to say, she’s a really sweet person.
Tom and Ray Magliozzi, hosts of the NPR radio show Car Talk, have a puzzler that hints about a design flaw that newer traffic signals can have, depending on the time of year.
Homer learns how advantageous it is to be a vampire.
In an effort to save its reputation, Springfield goes uber patriotic and changes the colors of their traffic lights to red, white, and blue.
After a traffic study is done in Springfield, signals are modified to keep traffic moving more efficiently.
A scene from a classic 1944 film The Woman in the Window featuring Edward G. Robinson screeching to a stop at a fixed 4-way traffic light with four semaphore arms.
SciTech Now put a video together to explain how the signals in Central Florida, and around the country work.