Running the Red

Stopping at a red light is one of the first things we’re taught when learning how to drive. “Green means go, red means stop.” But, we are human which means that we can still make mistakes and we often do. Everyone has ran a red light at least once in their driving career. Who hasn’t accidentally ran through red light while trying to catch a yellow light?

AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety conducted a telephone survey in 2015. They found that 94% of drivers agree that running a red light is unacceptable if stopping safely is possible. Yet, 39% of those same drivers admitted to running a red light within the last 30 days. Installing camera on top of traffic signs to catch drivers, red handed, seems like a good idea. However, whether red light cameras improve driver safety is controversial.


What are Red Light Cameras?

Red light cameras are cameras on top of traffic lights that will automatically take a photo of a vehicle that runs through a red signal. The authorities then use that photo to mail the driver a ticket for their traffic violation. Authorities track the driver by utilizing the license plate as a means of the driver’s identity. Corpus Christi, TX, has received some controversy over the usage of red light cameras. The debate centers around whether red light traffic cameras actually help reduce car accidents or if it’s just another way for the city to make money off the fines.

In 2009, the city of Corpus Christi conducted a study comparing a before and after of intersections that were equipped with traffic cameras. The study was to determine whether or not these traffic cameras improve safety by reducing the number of crashes at these intersections. The results were alarming. According to the results published on The Newspaper, the introduction to traffic cameras increased the number of accidents at intersections!

Red Light Car Crashes

The study showed that the total number of accidents in Corpus Christi had increased by 14% at the time nine red light cameras were installed at intersections. Corpus Christi car accidents that resulted in injuries had increased by 28% and rear-end collisions were up by 1/3.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety released a study in 2016 comparing large cities with red lights cameras to cities without them. The results, the red light cameras reduced fatal car wrecks by 21%. They also dropped the rate of all types of fatal car crashes at intersections by 14%.

In conducting research for this article we believe  there is a split debate over whether or not red light cameras create a safer intersection. However, one thing that both sides do agree on is that red light cameras offer a stream of revenue to the cities operating them, but it may be at a cost.

Corpus Christi Red Light Cameras

The Texas Tribute published an article listing all the intersections in Corpus Christi that operate a red light camera. Not only that but they also included the number of citations given out and amount of estimated revenue from these citations. Even intersections with less than 10 car crashes reported have racked up over $20,000 in citations. If you have to drive through any intersections we remind you to keep your eyes open and aware at your traffic light.

Photo provided by the Texas Tribune
Photo provided by the Texas Tribune

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If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in an accident Jeff is here 4 you! Davis Law Firm is here 24/7 to listen to your case. Our team of legal representatives offer free consultations at no risk to you. Jeff Davis is the Corpus Christi Personal Injury Attorney that is here to fight for what you deserve! Contact us today.