Commentary by Lee Cohen:
According to John Berman at CNN: “Fractions of a second can make a huge difference according to research cited by the Federal Highway Administration. Increasing yellow time can dramatically reduce red light running. Running red lights is big money in states like Florida. Research shows red light cameras generated more than $100 million last year in Florida alone. Even state legislators say the Department of Transportation needs to pump the brakes on the newly reduced yellow lights.”
Despite what you read in the papers, generally, red light camera cases have been upheld in the courts. But that is not the point. The point is that running a red light is one of the most dangerous offenses in Florida. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) Traffic Safety Facts 2008 Report, there were more than 2.3 million reported intersection-related crashes, resulting in more than 7,770 fatalities and approximately 733,000 injury crashes in 2008.
So the morale of this story is to: (1) STOP – don’t cross on yellow; (2) leave earlier – work on your time management skills; (3) slow down; (4 ) keep your money in your pocket – don’t give it to the FDOT.