You are approaching an intersection when you notice the traffic light suddenly switching from green to yellow. What do you do? Are you a driver who takes his/her foot off the pedal and gradually slows so that you are stopped at the intersection as the light goes red, or are you the kind of driver who accelerates in an attempt to get through the light before it changes?
Unfortunately, far too many drivers fall under the latter category. Not only that, the race to beat red lights has deadly consequences. According to AAA, the number of people running red lights is now at a 10-year high. They say that hundreds of people are killed every year as a result of the practice.
If you are a driver who routinely runs red lights, here are four reasons why doing so is an extremely bad idea:
1. It’s Against the Law
First and foremost, running red lights is against the law in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. That should be enough reason to not do it. Traffic laws are put in place in order to properly manage vehicle traffic so as to avoid collisions. The laws do not exist to make you miserable.
We are a nation of laws. Breaking even the smallest of them goes against the very foundation of law and order our nation was established on. Why does it? Breaking the law to save one or two minutes on your trip doesn’t make a lot of sense.
2. You Could Kill Someone
If obeying the law is not strong enough motivation, consider this: you could end up killing someone the next time you run a red light. Your impatience could lead to a child living life without a mother or father. You could tragically snuff out the life of a young college student who would have otherwise gone on to cure cancer.
If you don’t kill someone, you could very well injure someone seriously. And according to the VG Law Group out of South Florida, that could set you up for a personal injury lawsuit that could cost you millions. According to VG Law Group, whether you face off against a South Florida personal injury attorney or your victim’s insurance company, you will lose.
3. You’re Risking Higher Insurance Costs
Car insurance is based almost entirely on risk. If you are a driver who routinely runs red lights, you present more risk than your insurance company cares to face. Just one ticket for running a red light will mean an increase in your insurance premiums. If that ticket is accompanied by a crash, expect still higher rates. You might even lose your policy and be forced into a high-risk pool if the crash involves serious injury or death.
4. You Are Contributing to Traffic Problems
Maybe you are not the kind of driver who aggressively runs red lights at high speed. Instead, you are the type who milks a red light while turning left. You get in line and follow numerous other cars all turning left against a red light simply because you can.
While this might seem like a good way to get through an intersection without having to wait, your actions are contributing to traffic problems. Every car that milks a red light strands traffic waiting to move in the other direction. The cumulative effect of continuous cycles of drivers milking a red light is the dreaded traffic jam.
Red lights exist for a reason. You can avoid tickets, car crashes, traffic jams, and unpleasant visits from personal injury attorneys by obeying them.