Research shows that more and more motorists are trying to “beat” traffic lights at signaled intersections across New Jersey and the nation, with the number of road deaths caused by red-light runners reaching a 10-year high. Why is it that running red lights is increasing, and is there anything you might do to help protect yourself at signaled intersections?
According to WRNJ, 939 people died because of drivers running red lights in 2017, which is an almost 30% increase over 2012. Drivers who run red lights are responsible for 28% of all crash deaths that occur at signaled intersections. Most of the time, those who die are not the offending drivers.
Red-light crash statistics
The offending driver died in 35% of fatal crashes caused by red-light runners. In 46% of cases, the deaths involved other motorists or passengers making their way through the same intersection. In 5% of instances, pedestrians or cyclists were the ones to lose their lives in red-light wrecks.
New Jersey red-light deaths
Fatalities caused by red-light runners have also risen steadily across New Jersey in recent years. In 2008, the state saw 8 deaths caused by these circumstances. By 2017, there were 20 such deaths occurring within state lines.
Suggested safety measures
To help prevent the chance of involvement in a crash caused by a red-light runner, make sure you are ready to stop when you approach a traffic signal. Keep an eye on the lights and anticipate them changing from green to yellow. You may also want to tap your brakes once or twice during your approach to make sure others behind you are aware of your plans to stop.