Drivers face many potential dangers each time they share the road with other drivers. A reality of sharing the road with others is that some drivers do not follow the rules of the road, like following the speed limit, obeying traffic signs, and avoiding running red lights.
Drivers running red lights is a leading contributor to traffic accidents each year. Some of those accidents end in serious injury or death. Each year sees an increase in the number of car crashes because of drivers running red lights across the country. Traffic cameras were introduced to reduce the number of drivers running red lights and causing crashes.
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What Does Running a Red Light Mean?
You have run a red light if you enter an intersection after changing the traffic light. However, if you are in the intersection after the traffic light changes and complete your turn, you are not violating traffic laws and do not run a red light. Sometimes drivers are permitted to make a right turn on red. Look out for signs that say turning right on red is prohibited. If you violate those signs, you are breaking traffic laws.
Understanding your rights can be challenging, especially after a traffic crash. If you have been hurt in an accident, call us to speak to one of our experienced injury attorneys. We have decades of experience helping our clients recover over $400 million in compensation after accidents. Call our trusted law firm at 888-488-1391 or visit us online to schedule a free consultation.
Do Extended Yellow Lights Reduce Drivers Running Red Lights?
The Institute of Transportation Engineers conducted a study about whether the extension of yellow lights would reduce the number of drivers running red lights. The study found that if a yellow traffic light is extended, the number of crashes resulting from drivers running red lights decreases significantly. Because of the success of extending yellow light times, the ITE recommends that local traffic engineers calculate the vehicle speed by using the actual speed of cars approaching the intersection.
Who Tends to Run Red Lights?
In 2019, the AAA Foundation conducted a national telephone survey and found that 86% of drivers reported that they believe that it is dangerous for a driver to run a red light. 31% of the drivers surveyed reported that they had run a red light in the last 30 days. According to the AAA Foundation, the following qualities are commonly found in the profiles of people who run red lights:
- Younger and male
- Having a DUI on their driving record
- Likely to be speeding or under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Likely to have a valid driver’s license
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What Are the Benefits of Traffic Camera Lights?
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety conducted a study about the benefits of having red light traffic cameras. The IIHS concluded that using traffic cameras at red lights was safe, effective and discouraged drivers from running a red light. Decreasing the rate of drivers running red lights is directly related to making traffic safer for everyone on the road. The IIHS found that having traffic cameras present at red lights made traffic safer because cameras caused drivers to follow the rules of the road and slow down instead of trying to speed up and beat the light.
Having red-light cameras also maximized police presence without requiring police officers to be physically present at the scene. The IIHS study found that ensuring that traffic laws are enforced is the best way to make people comply with traffic laws. All of us have been tempted to speed up to make the yellow light, but since the introduction of camera lights, we are more likely to slow down at a yellow light and come to a stop at a red light if we see a traffic camera above the light.
The IIHS study found that traffic cameras reduced the number of fatal traffic crashes caused by drivers running red lights by 21%. The use of traffic cameras reduced the amount of all types of fatal crashes by 14%.
Before cities and states installed traffic cameras, red-light running-related crashes were rampant. Drivers commonly rushed past red lights because no police officers were watching. There were no consequences to violating this traffic law. The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety conducted a study of five busy intersections in Fairfax, Virginia. The study found that a driver ran a red light every twenty minutes before the city installed traffic cameras. The number of drivers running red lights during peak traffic hours increased significantly. The AAA Foundation expanded its study to four more states. The foundation studied 19 intersections and found that the drivers ran a rated light at a rate of 3.2 cars per hour per intersection.
These numbers may remain similar in other states that have not yet installed traffic cameras. The increased number of motorists violating traffic laws leads to more traffic accidents. Some accidents end in death. If you or your loved ones have been involved in a traffic accident and were injured, call the car accident lawyers at Arash Law managed by Arash Khorsandi, Esq. Let us put our decades of experience pursuing justice for our clients to work for you and the ones you love. Call us at 888-488-1391, or visit us online, to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys.
Can Properly Installed Traffic Cameras Keep Drivers Safe?
Properly installed traffic cameras can keep drivers safe. The AAA Foundation recommends that local governments should incorporate the following:
- Use a traffic camera program that creates a comprehensive traffic safety strategy, including engineering and education.
- Local governments should focus on programs that specifically focus on roadways that have a demonstrated pattern of drivers running red lights.
- Ensure that drivers know that traffic cameras are in use.</li<>
- Regularly calibrating traffic cameras.
- Law enforcement should directly supervise the traffic cameras.
- Periodically analyze the traffic programs and ensure that traffic cameras are still beneficial.
The use of traffic cameras helps protect drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and cyclists when they share the road with others. It is excellent that this safety measure is implemented across the country, but there are still times when traffic crashes still happen. After you are hurt in an accident, it can be tough to get back on your feet and get your life back. It would be best if you had an advocate when speaking with insurance companies and defense attorneys. It would be best not to go against these big players alone.
The injury attorneys at our trusted California accident law firm have decades of experience getting compensation for our clients. Our talented lawyers have collected over $400 million in compensation for our clients who suffered damages in traffic accidents. We are here to help you, too. If you have been hurt in a traffic accident, call our reliable law firm at 888-488-1391 or visit us online to schedule a free consultation with one of our California personal injury attorneys. We are passionate about pursuing justice for our clients, and we are here to help you! Contact us today.
We look forward to helping you get your life back on track.
How Can I Keep Myself Safe on the Road?
Drivers can implement certain behaviors to keep them safe while on the road. Changes that the AAA Foundation recommends include:
- Practice defensive driving. Before entering an intersection, once a light turns green, ensure that you look both ways to ensure that it is safe to proceed.
- Hover over the brake as you prepare to stop. As you are preparing to stop, position your foot above the brake without touching it. Tap the brake a couple of times before fully applying the brake, slowing down and coming to a complete stop.
- Use your best judgment. Always be ready to react while driving. Be ready to react by monitoring green lights that may have already been green for a while before you approached the intersection.
Pedestrians and cyclists can also implement some behaviors to keep them safe from harm on the road. Recommendations from the AAA Foundation for pedestrians and cyclists include:
- Do not take chances while on the road. Be careful if you want to use headphones. Headphones can make it unsafe because you cannot hear what is happening around you.
- At nighttime, ensure that you stay in well-lit areas, especially while crossing the street.
- Wait a few moments and ensure that all the cars have stopped before proceeding through the intersection.
- Observe other drivers in stopped vehicles and ensure that it is safe before crossing the road in front of them.
Do Traffic Cameras Violate Privacy Law?
A big question that many drivers have regarding traffic cameras is, “Do traffic cameras violate my privacy rights?” The answer to this question is “no.” Cameras placed on traffic lights that monitor drivers do not violate drivers’ privacy rights. Driving is a privilege and to maintain the ability to use the privilege requires drivers to follow the rules of the road.
When you have a driver’s license, you have entered into an agreement that you will follow the road rules and obey traffic signs and traffic lights. Traffic cameras are a tool to help wrangle and punish people that break their agreement by snapping pictures of them passing through the light and their license plate. The driver usually receives a ticket in the mail. In those cases, the traffic camera takes the place of a police officer pulling over a driver when they violate a traffic law.
Why Should I Obey Traffic Laws?
Following traffic laws is essential for many reasons, including honoring your promise to drive safely when you get your license and keeping others safe. Other reasons include:
- Running red lights causes deadly accidents.
- Traffic crashes caused by drivers running red lights are 100% preventable.
- In 2019, a red-light running crash caused 846 deaths and 143,000 injuries.
- One in three Americans has a friend or family member who was injured or killed in a red-light running crash.
- From 2008 until 2019, 9227 people were killed in traffic crashes where the driver ran a red light.
- In 2019, two people died every day in a red-light running-related crash.
- Pedestrians, bicyclists, and passengers make up more than 50% of deaths in red-light-related crashes.
- Red-light running crashes are among the most common urban crashes across the country.
- 86% of drivers surveyed agreed that running a red light is unacceptable.
- Deaths caused by motor vehicle accidents reached a new peak in 2020. The number of motor vehicle accidents reported in 2020 exceeded the number of accidents in 1924, the previous highest year.
Traffic Deaths From Red-Light Running Accidents Have Hit a Ten-Year High
One of the most important reasons to obey traffic laws is to keep other drivers, passengers, cyclists, and pedestrians safe. According to the AAA Foundation, two people are killed every day after being involved in a red-light running accident. This number includes drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and cyclists. The AAA Foundation has also found that:
- In 2017, 939 people were killed in red-light running accidents. This number represents a ten-year high and a 23% increase in the number of accidents since 2012.
- The AAA Foundation found that 28% of traffic crash deaths occurred because a driver ran a red light.
- In 2017, 46% of people killed in red-light running crashes were passengers.
- 35% of people killed in red-light-related crashes were the drivers who ran the red light.
- 5% of people killed in red-light crashes were pedestrians and cyclists.
Every driver’s responsibility is to do their part to keep the shared roadways safe. Unfortunately, some drivers put you and others at risk by driving recklessly and causing accidents. If you have been involved in an accident with a driver that ran a red light, call us to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced injury lawyers.
Call a Reliable California Personal Injury Attorney at Arash Law
Reckless driving is a daily risk for everyone on the road. At least two people die every day because of reckless driving. Our injury attorneys are passionate about using our decades of experience and skill to protect accident victims, their families, and communities from the dangerous driving habits of other drivers like red-light runners.
If you have been in an accident caused by a driver who ran a red light, call our firm. Get the lion on your side to fight for you. We are holistically involved in our clients’ cases and can help you get medical attention and care even if you do not have medical insurance. Call our office at 888-488-1391 or visit our firm online to schedule a free consultation today. Arash Khorsandi and his trusted legal team are here to help.