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Red-light running an epidemic, finds report

POSTED May 29, 2012 10:44 p.m.

Did you see a driver run a red light this weekend? According to a new report from the National Coalition for a Safer Roads, the Memorial Day holiday weekend has the most red-light violations.

The report, “Safer Roads Report 2012: Trends in Red-Light Running,” examined red light running trends in 18 states and found that more than 2.3 million drivers ran a red light in 2011. The report analyzed red-light running data collected from 1,240 red-light safety cameras across 142 areas in 18 states.

"This report shines a light on the life-threatening epidemic of red-light running on our nation's roads," said David Kelly, president and executive director, NCSR, and former acting administrator of NHTSA. "This new information reveals when we are most vulnerable on the road. We're arming drivers, cyclists and pedestrians with knowledge they can use to keep themselves and their families safer on the road. Drivers everywhere need to make a more conscious effort to be aware on the roadways —no matter the time or the place."

Memorial Day weekend ranked top in violations with a total of 26,787 red light violations, in comparison to the average weekend of 19,388 violations, according to the report. The second highest rate of occurrence was on the Fourth of July, with 25,874 red light violations. Christmas Day had the lowest number of red-light running violations in 2011, with 3,859 total — nearly 40 percent less than the average daily violation total.

The report found that the most red light violations occur on Fridays. Red light cameras caught 378,122 total red light violations on Fridays, while Sundays had the fewest with 289,603.

Drivers most frequently ran red lights in the afternoon, with 30.7 percent occurring from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. The late night hours between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. saw the fewest violations at 9.75 percent.

The cameras caught a total of 2,341,761 red light violations last year.

The report included data from seven California cities. Turlock does not use red light cameras.

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