Red Light, Green Light, One Two Three!

The light is turning yellow as you approach the intersection. What do you do? CarLotta has your answer!

What’s your first thought when the light turns yellow? I know my first thought is, “Can I make this?” followed by “AHHHHHH” as I imagine the light turning red as I speed through. But why? Why do we put ourselves through all this trouble? Especially, with the new red light cameras being installed at every intersection. Most people have one of two thoughts when it comes to these cameras: What’s the deal with these tattle-tales? Or what’s a red light camera!?!? Let me help.

The new red light cameras, which are usually stationed on the same pole as the traffic light, are automatic digital cameras that take pictures as the light turns red to catch those who try to beat the change.  One to two months later, the violator will receive an $85 fine along with a photo souvenir of the event.

At first, I was pretty annoyed and nervous about these so-called tattle tales, until I realized what a great idea they are. Drivers who ran a red light cause 22 percent of traffic accidents. Since the red light cameras have been implemented, the rate of these accidents has been reduced by 24 percent.

So avoid the $85 fine and possible accidents by simply slowing down at yellow lights. Traffic lights aren’t a suggestion, it’s the law!

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Michael May 21, 2012 at 05:50 PM
My ticket was for $140,00 and the light was yellow when I went through and quickly turned red. I was not speeding or trying to beat the light before it turned red. I live in North Brunswick and received the notice from Edison. This is a way for the city to make money because I have heard from other people who are out raged for the number of notices they have recieved for going through the yellow not red.
John Romano May 22, 2012 at 12:56 AM
.....agreed...it's a game for the municipality to make money. But I don't like the rules of a game that are tilted in favor of (and / or by) the municipality. Example: If you get a "red light camera ticket"...go back to the intersection..pull off to the side of the road...and time the interval between green to yellow...and yellow to red (and the length that it stays yellow). More often than not, the time for the light to go from green to yellow....is noticeably longer than the change from yellow to red. The "yellow phase" of the signal operation should be at least 3 seconds (Federal Traffic Engineering standard...but can be made longer by the State) but, realistically it should be based on the speed limit of that road...divided by 10 (example: 45mph/10 = 4,5 seconds). By shortening the yellow to red phase...the traffic camera has now had the odds tilted significantly in it's favor....just like a casino does with slot machines. In fact, several cities throughout the US have been cited for shortening the yellow phase...to increase profits. A universal truth of life is that whenever anyone tells us it is not about "the money", we then absolutely know for sure that it is all about "the money".
Conrad C. May 24, 2012 at 10:09 PM
Actually, depending on which study you read, they can cause MORE accidents: http://abcnews.go.com/US/red-light-camera-backlash-cameras-causing-accidents/story?id=13925887


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