While the traffic light system in many parts of Hanoi have been out of order for the past five months, local residents will have to wait until the first half of next year for the lights to be repaired.

Traffic lights at the Lac Trung-Kim Nguu-Thanh Nhan crossroads, situated in the Hoang Mai District, have not only been out of order, but also come loose from their pillars.

According to Nguyen Kim Dung, a resident living close to the crossroads, the loose lights pose great danger.

"The lights might fall onto passengers' heads at any time," she said.

Dung added that nearby pedestrian traffic lights had also been out of order, making crossing the road no mean feat.

In Thanh Xuan District, many traffic lights at T-junctions (turned into U-turns) along Nguyen Trai-Nguyen Tuan, Nguyen Trai-Ha Dinh and Le Van Luong-Hoang Ngan, even though out of order, have not been repaired or dismantled.

Vu Hong Ngan, a student at the Hanoi University of Natural Sciences on Nguyen Trai Street , said that a lack of traffic lights had caused regular traffic jams, especially during rush hour.

Deputy Director of the Hanoi Department of Transport's Centre for Urban Traffic Management Nguyen Truong Long said that the centre was busy compiling a list of out-of-order traffic lights and would be busy repairing them from now until the first half of next year.

As part of its efforts, the centre will dismantle 18 unnecessary traffic lights in Hoan Kiem and Thanh Xuan districts.

Head of the Hanoi Police Traffic Lights Control Team Tran Van Duc said that the city had 224 traffic lights, set up by the municipal Department of Transport, which has been in operation for around 16 years.

"Traffic lights are managed by different offices which make agreeing on maintenance and repair a headache," Duc added.

Heavy rain, power failures and construction work had all done damage to traffic light wiring in some way, he explained, saying that city police had sent a document to the municipal Department of Transport proposing to dismantle or repair unnecessary or damaged traffic lights throughout the city./.