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Stop on Red Week: Back-to-School Safety

Posted on August 2, 2021

You’ve been sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic and now you’re running late for your 9:00 a.m. meeting.  Just two more blocks until you reach the office – but wait – the light just turned yellow and it’s a two-minute red light if you are stuck there. Can you make it through the intersection before the light turns red? Should you try?

According to a study from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety that was reported by the National Coalition for Safer Roads (NCSR), 85 percent of drivers feel it is unacceptable to run a red light, however nearly 31 percent admitted that they did so in the past month[1].

Running a red light may help you arrive at your destination sooner, but are the risks really worth it? Take a look at some of these sobering statistics reported by the NCSR:

  • “Red-light running is the leading cause of urban crashes in the United States.
  • More than 3.5 million drivers received a red-light running violation in 2019.
  • In 2019, nearly 850 people died due to red-light running crashes.”[2]
  • In 2018, 139,000 people were injured in red-light running crashes.[3]

When you are in a hurry, it’s easy to miss seeing a pedestrian or a bicyclist crossing the street. Now that we are approaching back-to-school time, there could be children in the crosswalk on their way to school. Running a red light is especially dangerous in a school zone or near school buses, where students may be crossing the street to board their bus and oblivious to the traffic around them.

The consequences of running a red light can be life-altering – for both you and anyone else involved in the crash. Car crashes from red-light running can lead to:

  • Spinal cord injuries. This can cause paralysis, impacting a person’s ability to live an independent life.
  • Traumatic brain injuries, potentially requiring years of rehabilitation
  • Organ damage
  • Death

Red-light running crashes are preventable. Be a part of the solution by coming to a complete stop whenever the light turns red during back-to-school season and every season.

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[1] NCSR. RED-LIGHT SAFETY – National Coalition for Safer Roads (ncsrsafety.org). Accessed June 27, 2021.

[2] NCSR. RED-LIGHT SAFETY – National Coalition for Safer Roads (ncsrsafety.org). Accessed June 27, 2021.

[3] NCSR. Stop On Red Week 2020 – National Coalition for Safer Roads (ncsrsafety.org). Accessed June 27, 2021.

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