The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tells us that 22 percent of all traffic accidents in the United States are caused by drivers running red lights. And you’ve probably seen the red light cameras installed to deter people from running red light. And with the statistics from the Institute of Highway safety clearly stating how severe this problem is becoming, it’s no wonder towns are placing these devices at major intersections. You may be for them or against the cameras, but the fact is running red lights is a problem in most areas.
Statistics have shown that at the average intersection, the red light will be run once every 20 minutes. And most of the fatalities from these type accidents are the pedestrians, bicyclists, and occupants in other vehicles that are hit by the people running the red lights.
Deaths caused by red-light running are increasing at more than three times the rate of increase for all other fatal crashes. This is a serious problem. Not only are many lives lost as a result of running red lights, it can become very expensive. You could be ticketed for running a red light, especially if there is a red light camera at the intersection. Your insurance rates could go up as a result of reckless driving if you have an accident at an intersection where you ran a red light.
So next time you come to an intersection, think before you press the gas pedal to try and beat the light. Is it really worth it? Is it worth increased insurance rates, an expensive traffic citation, and increased insurance rates? Or even worse, cause the death of an innocent person? Probably not. It’s better to be safe and do the right thing. Be considerate of other drivers and don’t take a chance that could potentially cost someone their life … maybe even your own.
All this may sound a little harsh, but this is a serious problem that needs to be addressed. And it’s the little things that can help stop this problem. For example, the next time you are following that 18 wheeler and can’t see the red light, put a little distance between you and the rear bumper of the 18-wheeler to make sure you can see the traffic light if it changes. Little things we do can make everyone a little safer.
Here is a great website with more statistics and information on red light running – check out the Red Light Safety Program Website.