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My Korean acquaintance met his relative from America, and heard her saying "time light" to indicate "traffic light(signal)" at a crosswalk on the road. He was not sure of exactly what he heard, but as far as I know, there's nothing like "time light" that is a synoym of "traffic light". Does it ever exist?
I haven't heard it in BrE.
I haven't heard it in either BrE or AmE. I assume he was talking about the pedestrian crossings where sometimes, a small green man lights up to show pedestrians that they can cross the road. That light is timed so that the pedestrians only have a set amount of time to cross. I suppose someone might call that a "timed light" or something similar.
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I have no idea if someone calls it "timed light" in the US, so I only guess he heard it wrong as - this is a pronunciation related issue - if you are used to your country's English accent, you may not tell difference between time(one syllable) and traffic(two syllables similar to one syllable) as Americans slur a lot.
In Florida I've seen lots of pedestrian crosswalks where the Walk signal is accompanied by a sign counting down the seconds remaining before Don't Walk comes on.
It seems reasonable to call this a time light.
Last edited by Rover_KE; 10-Aug-2012 at 12:48.
She is a New Yorker, so probably it's a dialect in some eastern or southern parts of the US. Thanks a lot!
I finally realized what it means!!! Eureka!!!
Actually, in Korea there's some counting down timed lights, which I heard are patented ones. The number reduces from 20 or 15 to 1 until the light changes to red.
She, who was visiting her mother country, must have called it "timed(or time) light" according to the number signal whether she had seen it in the US or in Korea.