Fatal accidents caused by running red lights are on the rise in Nevada and across the United States. Failure to obey traffic lights and stop signs is a serious traffic infraction with potentially deadly consequences. Drivers can reduce their risk of an accident at intersections by staying alert and closely monitoring the actions of vehicles near the intersection.
Red Light Running in the United States
It is estimated that two people per day die in the United States as a result of running red lights. In 2017, 939 people died due to red light running crashes. This was the highest number in ten years and represents a 28% increase over the past seven years.
Approximately 46% of those who die in red light accidents are passengers or people in the other vehicle. Roughly 5% are pedestrians or cyclists. About 35% of those who die are the drivers responsible for running the red light.
Red Light Fatalities in Nevada
From 2008 to 2017, the number of red light fatalities in Nevada has risen by 60%. In 2017, 23 people died in red light accidents. This was a significant increase over the nine who died in 2008. Overall, from 2009 to 2017, a total of 147 people died in red light accidents. Of those who died, 57% were not in the vehicle responsible for causing the accident.
Staying Safe at Intersections
From 2012 to 2016, 2,212 people suffered serious injuries in intersection related accidents. This statistic highlights the importance of driver vigilance when approaching or crossing through intersections in Nevada. 61% of these accidents occurred during daylight, while 32% occurred after dark but with light present from street lamps, businesses, etc.
Drivers can reduce their risk of a red light accident by slowing down when approaching intersections and not attempting to “race” the light when the light turns yellow. Drivers should also scan the road for the actions of other motorists and pedestrians in the vicinity of the stoplight. In particular, drivers should scan both sides for cross traffic that may be attempting to enter the intersection against a red light.
Finally, motorists should always ensure that their brake systems and tires are in good condition. These critical systems can help motorists stop quickly if another vehicle attempts to run a red light.