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Red Light Running Deaths Reach 10 Year High

More than two people are killed every day in red light running crashes

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More than two people are killed every day in the United States by impatient and reckless red light runners. This is according to data analysis performed by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.

View the Crash Data

The most recent national crash statistics reveal 939 people were killed in red light running crashes in 2017. Ten percent of those fatalities occurred in Florida. That's the most in 10 years, and a 28% increase since 2012.

Florida Stats:

  • Per capita, Florida ties Colorado with the 5th highest rate of red light running fatalities in the U.S.
  • In 2017, 99 people were killed in a collision caused by a red light runner. That's a 57 percent increase from just two years before, and the most in a decade.
  • From 2008-2017, a total of 741 people were killed by red light running.
  • Of those killed during that 10 year period, 268 (36%) were the driver, 85 (11.5%) were the passenger, 346 (46.7%) were the occupant of another vehicle, and 42 (5.7%) were either a pedestrian or cyclist.
  • Click here to view the crash data

"This data proves that red light running continues to be a traffic safety challenge, especially in Florida," said Mark Jenkins, spokesman, AAA – The Auto Club Group. "Anyone who decides to run a red light risks their own life, and endangers everyone else on the road. Communities must work together to change behavior and identify effective solutions."

According to AAA's latest survey:

  • 85% of drivers view red light running as very dangerous.
  • Nearly one in three admit to running a red light within the past 30 days, when they could have stopped safely.
  • More than 2 in 5 drivers believe it is unlikely they'll be stopped by police for running a red light. Nevertheless, it's against the law and if a driver is involved in a deadly crash, it could send them to jail.

Driver Behavior

Changes in driver behavior are also critical to reducing the number of red light running crashes on Florida roads. To prevent red light crashes, AAA recommends that drivers:

  • Prepare to Stop: Lift your foot off the accelerator and "cover the brake" when preparing to enter any intersection by positioning your right foot just above the brake pedal, without touching it.
  • Anticipate Yellow Lights: Monitor "stale" green lights, those that have been green a long time as you've approached the intersection. They are more likely to turn yellow as you arrive at the intersection.
  • Tap the Brake: Tap your brakes a couple of times before fully applying them to slow down. This will catch the attention of drivers who may be inattentive or distracted behind you.
  • Drive Defensively: Before you enter an intersection after the light has turned green for you, take a second after the light changes and look both ways before proceeding.

Pedestrian Safety

Pedestrians and cyclists should also stay safe when traveling near intersections. AAA recommends:

  • Wait: Give yourself a few seconds to make sure all cars have come to a complete stop before moving through the intersection.
  • Stay Alert and Listen: Don't take chances and don't wear headphones. Watch what is going on and give your full attention to the environment around you.
  • Be Visible: Stay in well-lit areas, especially when crossing the street.
  • Make Eye Contact: Look at drivers in stopped vehicles to ensure they see you before crossing the road in front of them.

About AAA - The Auto Club Group
The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second largest AAA club in North America. ACG and its affiliates provide membership, insurance, financial services and travel offerings to over 9.9 million members across 11 states and two U.S. territories including Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, North Dakota, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands; most of Illinois and Minnesota; and a portion of Indiana. ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with more than 59 million members in the United States and Canada and whose mission includes protecting and advancing freedom of mobility and improving traffic safety. Motorists can map a route, identify gas prices, find discounts, book a hotel, and access AAA roadside assistance with the AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile. Visit AAA on the Internet at AAA.com.