There's a problem with some local traffic lights that's leaving many Hudson Valley drivers stranded.

It's a scenario that more and more local commuters are finding themselves in this spring. You're stopped at a red light, waiting for it to turn green when you realize you've been sitting there for way too long. In fact, you may even have noticed that traffic from the other side of the intersection has gone from green to red and back again, while you've remained stuck at the same light with no end in sight.

This has happened to me for the past two weeks, and I've heard from other drivers that the same thing is going on in other parts of the Hudson Valley as well. It's terribly annoying and potentially dangerous, but there are some solutions.

It turns out that we can blame the huge snowfall this winter for those funky traffic lights. As someone who gets up before the crack of dawn for work, I'm usually the only car at one of the major intersections that flow onto Route 9 in Dutchess County. Because traffic is so light at that time of the day, the red lights work on a sensor system. Embedded in the road are electronic sensors that can tell if a car is waiting at the light. When one is tripped the light will change, allowing the car to go. If no one is there, the light on Route 9 remains green so the busier traffic can continue to flow.

Unfortunately, the endless snow and ice that the Hudson Valley saw throughout the month of February have damaged many of these sensors, rendering them useless. As a result, when you drive up to the intersection the light is never triggered and you're stuck sitting there for what seems like an eternity.

At this point, you have only a couple of options. The first is just sit there and wait for another car to pull up behind you. The weight of both cars should be enough to finally trip the sensor and change the light. If that's taking too long, you could put your car into reverse and wiggle the wheels as you drive back and forth over the sensor, hoping to finally trip it. If all else fails you'll be forced to run the light, something that could be potentially dangerous or wind up getting you a ticket.

I've sent emails to the town about the light, but so far haven't seen the problem rectified. So, for now, I'm stuck rolling my car back and forth, zigzagging my wheels every morning on my way to work. Apparently, I'm not alone. Others have taken to social media to complain about busted traffic light sensors all over the Hudson Valley.

Until the problem is fixed there's really not much to do besides taking a deep breath and trying to practice some patience. Just remember, you're not the only one in the Hudson Valley stuck at an endless red light.

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