IIHS Says Red Light Cameras Save Lives, Has Research To Prove It

Red light cameras are seen by some people on the Internet as a major cash-cow for local authorities, just like speed cameras. While we do not have a sensational feeling on the latter, we do agree that red-light-running is insanely dangerous and stupid.
Redflex red light camera in Springfield, Ohio, USA. 2 photos
Photo: Wikipedia user Derek Jensen (Tysto)
Red light camera in Chicago, Il.
The IIHS has data to back up this claim, and they probably have similar research to debunk any myths related to speed cameras. However, in this story, we will focus on red-light cameras, which automatically take a picture of vehicles that enter an intersection after the traffic light turned red.

According to data monitored by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety for 79 large US cities, red light cameras saved approximately 1,300 lives through 2014. In the case of cities that have turned off red light cameras, the rate of fatal accidents involving drivers that ran a red light grew by 30% when compared to the time when the cameras were active.

Statistics show that red-light-running crashes led to 709 deaths in 2014, and resulted in approximately 126,000 injuries. All because some drivers did not stop and wait for a traffic light to turn green before entering an intersection.

This situation is increasingly concerning when taking into account the number of lives that could have been saved if people wore seatbelts every time, as well as motorcyclists wearing proper helmets.

The research also showed that most red light runners lived to tell the tale of the fatal accident they caused, while the victims of the crash, including their passengers, occupants in other vehicles, bicyclists, or pedestrians, had their lives ended because some idiot did not stop when the traffic light was red.

Remorse and guilt, even if it spans for the rest of the remaining lifetime of the driver that caused an accident after running a red light, is not bringing any victim back, so keep that in mind whenever you see someone doing this or bragging about running a red light and getting away with it.

Interestingly, the number of fatal crashes, in general, decreased by 14% in all signalized intersections in cities that have utilized red light cameras, as well as the 21% reduction in fatal red light running in general.

Meanwhile, in the towns that listened to some vocal groups and turned off their existent red light cameras, the number of fatal crashes of all types per capita increased by 16% in signalized intersections, while fatal red-light-running deaths per capita grew by 30%.

Do you need more evidence, facts, or data, to show that you must never run a red light? Drive safe and keep the red-light-running for GTA V.
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About the author: Sebastian Toma
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Sebastian's love for cars began at a young age. Little did he know that a career would emerge from this passion (and that it would not, sadly, involve being a professional racecar driver). In over fourteen years, he got behind the wheel of several hundred vehicles and in the offices of the most important car publications in his homeland.
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