Every country has different traffic rules. Today, I thought I should talk briefly about very basic issue or a law which is standard across the globe. It’s so basic that even my 6 year old son knows about it and clearly knows the consequences of violating it. Yes, I am talking about the “RED LIGHT”. I am sure many of you have already read about my fellow blogger’s article about History and Colors of Traffic Signal.
Over time, technological features and advancements in safety of vehicles and their passengers have reduced the dangers on the road. We have Blind Spot Assist, Lane Departure, Adaptive Cruise Controls, Night Vision Assist, etc. but the only assisting technology which isn’t present and has to be comprehended itself by the humans is; STOP ON RED. Red-light running is a serious intersection safety issue across the globe. Various studies reveal that a person is more likely to be injured or killed due to a red-light running crash scenario rather than any other type of crash. Red light and intersection accident cases are most common in urban areas. It’s very alarming to know as per a study done by National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 97% of drivers feel that other driver might be running a red light at an intersection and violating a traffic signals and it’s a major safety threat. This calamity is very much preventable if we all obey the simple traffic signal rules. I have an Open Poll on PakWheels Forums on the same subject and till now 58% admit running a RED LIGHT.
If you are running a RED LIGHT:
- You are risking your own or someone else’s precious life. You can seriously injure or kill someone.
- Running a red light even at a very slow speed can result in expensive and fatal damages.
- Running a red light results mostly in T-BONED crash. All vehicles have very thin line of defense on side due to very less distance between the source of impact and the occupants. Even cars equipped with side impact safety systems are vulnerable to a side crash, which can result in serious injuries or even death. Red light runners don’t realize that a T-BONED crash at 40 kph can be deadly.
- In our country, where cars don’t come even with basic safety features, side impacts can be very fatal.
- Be a smart and sensible driver. Obey the traffic signals.
- Running a RED LIGHT is not a moment of pride, it is a serious infraction.
- As soon as you see light changing from green to amber, you should decelerate and start applying the brakes gently to stop before going into intersection. If there is a zebra crossing, please come to a halt before that.
- Never race through the amber/yellow light. This light tells you to reduce speed and get ready to stop. This doesn’t mean that you start speeding.
- Traffic speed and signal timings are designed by traffic engineers in a certain manner for intersections. Most of the times if you are over-speeding between intersection you will get every other RED LIGHT as well as more chances of running RED LIGHT. So, it would be better to obey the speed limits.
- Once you see green light and ready to go (if you are the first one at the signal), don’t accelerate quickly. Look quickly at your left and right and wait a second or two and then start moving. There is a possibility someone else from the other side might be running the red light. You have to be careful if someone else is NOT. Don’t get bothered by impatient drivers who honk at you and keep calm.
- If you’re at the rear of some vehicle at a signal, please be patient and don’t start honking at the driver at front.
- Most of us run red lights at night. Study shows many accidents happen at night. People think that no one would be on the crossings, so they try to pass a red light, but there’s a chance that some pedestrian, cyclist, or more possibly another biker or motorist could be taking the same chance as well.
- Red light law applies to cyclist and bikers as well. If you are one of them, please obey the signal.
- Running a light might save you few seconds but it can finish someone’s life and bring you severe consequences, which would affect your loved ones as well. Please don’t save a few seconds. Save a precious life instead.
I know many people after reading the article would say that many signals don’t work in Pakistan. Well in that case you should act 10 times more careful. Slow down; look left, right and then pass. Please discourage this very dangerous act of running red light. Deaths and injuries are surely preventable in this case. Don’t violate this very basic law.
Just watch this video below, which shows a careless behavior on part of both the drivers. Driver coming from right clearly ran a RED LIGHT while the driver going straight wanted to catch a green light and instead of decelerating, he went into the intersection.