LONGVIEW, Texas (KETK) — After lightning struck a new traffic light just days before it was scheduled to be in operation, Longview residents will have to wait a little longer for relief from traffic in the area.

The new signal at the intersection of Birdsong Street and Eastman Road will not be working until city officials make the necessary repairs.

It was supposed to be fully operational for drivers on Thursday, but it will be some time before it’s ready to go for traffic.

“That signal was actually struck by lightning so that means the time frame is kind of unknown at this point we’re going to have to buy new parts and get them installed where the lightning actually caused some damage,” said Richard Yeakley, Public Information Officer for the City of Longview.

Traffic near Hudson PEP Elementary School will have to go on a little longer.

“Particularly during open and close of the school day as parents are coming and dropping off kids,” said Yeakley.

City officials said these new signals are necessary for drivers and pedestrians in the area.

“If there is that traffic trying to get off of Birdsong onto Eastman they’re going to have that protected turn, which is really great for our community make sure everyone traveling that intersection can do it safely,” said Yeakley.

While new lights are going up in one part of Longview, downtown, some signals will be coming down for now. 

“They looked at two intersections downtown on Whaley Street and they said the traffic here doesn’t necessarily warrant a full-traffic stop. We can probably direct with just four-way stops in either direction,” said Yeakley.

The city will test the stop sign for 60 days beginning next Wednesday, April 12.

“Still make sure that vehicles are safe going in both directions, but it allows for smoother traffic if there’s not a lot of congestion at that intersection,” said Yeakley.

He also reminded East Texas drivers to stay alert for workers on the road and be ready to hit the brakes when these changes do happen.