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Drivers throughout Hickory noticed numerous flashing traffic lights for about two hours near mid day Friday.
A malfunction with a recently updated traffic-signal system caused 30-40 signals to go into "flash mode," said Chuck Hansen, the city's public works director.
"It was along some of our major roadways, but not just one corridor," Hanson said. "They were spread about, not just an isolated area."
Affected signals flashed yellow in one direction and red in other directions beginning sometime after 10:30 a.m., Hanson said.
Signals were repaired by around 12:30 p.m.
"They've all been reset, and we'll be troubleshooting to see what might have caused it," Hanson said.