Traffic lights are legal instructions for drivers. However, some drivers treat red lights only as suggestions and seem to run a light, whether it is close to changing or just blowing it completely. Some drivers purposely hit the red lights when no one is around.

Important Facts About Red Light Running Accidents

Penalty For Running A Red LightRunning red lights can pose severe consequences. If you were injured in a red light running crash, you may be entitled to compensation.

Let’s take a quick rundown of some red light accident facts:

  • They are even more common than you believe
  • These crashes can lead to more fatal injuries
  • Red light runners violate their duty of care
  • Cameras and other traffic safety policies can reduce such accidents
  • An injured party can seek compensation

They are More Common than you believe

How many accidents are caused by running red lights? According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), in 2020, the number of people who got killed in these crashes in the United States was 928. These types of crashes are common, and one of the fundamental causes is the lack of adherence to red light rules.

These crashes can lead to more fatal injuries

Drivers put themselves as well as others at risk when they run a red light. Further, accidents caused by running red lights can cause more severe injuries. If we go by the numbers the number of people injured due to these crashes was 116,000 in 2020. Injured victims may spend millions of dollars on medical bills, not to mention their immense emotional trauma, pain, and suffering.

Red light runners violate their duty of care

Everyone who drives has a duty of care to keep others safe on the road. For running a red light and causing an accident penalty, you must prove liability to attain reimbursement. If the at-fault driver has violated their duty of care and led to your injuries, you can file a claim.  

Sometimes, due to distracted driving, drivers may unintentionally run a red light. However, even if it is unintentional or accidental, disobeying traffic rules can lead to serious consequences.

Cameras and other traffic safety policies can reduce such accidents

Traffic light cameras are effective to prevent many car accidents caused while running a red light. They can bridge the gap at intersections since law enforcement is often not present. These types of cameras do not violate citizens’ privacy. Allowing for ample yellow light time is another way to reduce accidents.

In large cities, these preventive measures reduced red light accidents by 21%. At intersections, traffic accidents were reduced by 14%.

An injured party may seek compensation

When you are injured due to an accident, you can file a personal injury lawsuit and you may be entitled to money. However, the compensation is dependent on the severity of the injuries, circumstances of the accident, medical expenses, lost income, property damages, and other damages.

What are the Penalties for Running Red lights?

If you run a red light in Texas and are stopped by a police officer, you may get a fine. The amount that you have to pay will vary based on where you were stopped. In San Antonio, fines are even steeper than in other major Texas cities such as Houston and El Paso.

Taking the Right Steps After a Red Light Accident

If you were hit by someone and were injured, it’s vital to take some essential steps: 

  • Call the police: A police report is the first step toward the claim. It may qualify as necessary evidence for the insurance companies.
  • Collect evidence: You must not leave the accident scene before acquiring some evidence. You can capture the photos of the scene, collect the contact information of witnesses, and more.
  • Seek medical help: Going for a health check-up is necessary, even if you think your injuries are minor or you do not feel any pain yet. 
  • Take help from a lawyer: A legal professional can conduct a thorough investigation, negotiate with the insurance company, and file your claim.

Along with these steps, you must also take care to reveal only factual information and not become angry when dealing with the police or insurance companies.

How to prevent an accident

The AAA Foundation for traffic safety recommends that drivers avoid causing crashes by following these essential guidelines:

  • Use good judgment: Drivers must be keen enough to monitor the green lights and to take care of traffic signals when reaching the intersection. 
  • Prepare to Stop: Whenever you see the red light you must put your foot on the brake. It will help prevent any kind of mishappening.
  • Brake conservatively: You must slow the vehicle adequately before stopping completely. This also indicates to nearby drivers that you are about to stop at the red light. 
  • Always drive defensively: After the signal has turned green, look both ways before moving any further.

It can be difficult to demonstrate fault in an accident claim, even for red light running crashes. Regardless, collecting evidence can help injured victims immensely with their cases.

Speak with one of our experienced San Antonio Car accident lawyers as soon as possible after a red light accident. If you want to explore your legal options, then now is the right time to consult a professional. Schedule a free case consultation and get started right now.