Motorists running a red light kill and injure many people every year. Statistics about drivers running red lights from 2007, the most recent year that data were compiled, reveal that nearly 900,000 people are killed and 150,000 are injured annually by drivers running red lights.
The issue came into focus here in Wisconsin where a videotape from August 18 caught the frightening scene of a bicyclist being struck by an SUV being operated by a Wisconsin lawmaker, state representative Fred Clark, at a downtown Madison intersection.
Driver negligence, whether by use of cell phones, drunk driving or, as in this case, an inattentive driver, is an unavoidable byproduct of modern transportation, but deaths and injuries can be avoided through better use of available technology. Community planning should include widely-accepted photo enforcement programs. For information on efforts to increase public awareness of the problem check out the website of The National Campaign to Stop Red Light Running, a grassroots organization of crash survivors and their families who care deeply about traffic safety.