Running a red light is one of the most dangerous actions a Texas driver can take. A June 2019 survey from AAA found that 85% of respondents said that they understood the dangers of doing so. However, about one-third of respondents said that they had gone through a red light within the past 30 days. According to AAA, there were 939 people killed in accidents involving drivers who ran red lights in 2017, which was a 28% increase from 2012.
There are several reasons why drivers may feel compelled to pass through an intersection when a traffic light is red. However, the most common explanation is that they don’t think that they will be caught or punished. Data indicates that only 40% of motorists believe that an officer would pull them over after committing such an act. While red light accidents can be deadly, they are not the only danger that drivers and pedestrians could face.
Distracted driving was cited as one of those reasons despite the fact that people are using their phones less while behind the wheel. Speeding and alcohol were other factors that contributed heavily to the roughly 40,000 traffic fatalities recorded in 2018. In red light accidents, passengers and other motor vehicle operators are the most likely to get hurt or die.
People who are hurt in a car accident caused by another motorist could be entitled to compensation for their injuries and lost wages. The same could be true for the families of those who are killed in motor vehicle crashes. An attorney may be able to produce evidence that the driver who caused the crash was distracted, speeding or impaired when it happened. This may be evidence of negligence and the basis for pursuing compensation in court or through a settlement.