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How to Avoid Running Red Lights (And Deal with Consequences If You Do)

Did you know that running a red light is one of the most common traffic violations? Whether intentional or unintentional, running a red light could have catastrophic repercussions. From crashing into other vehicles to hitting pedestrians, jumping traffic lights is not worth it. Even if you make it out unscathed, you will likely receive a ticket, which won’t be cheap. And traffic tickets will subsequently increase your insurance costs. 

In this post, we’re sharing useful tips to avoid running red lights. Take a look. 

Don’t Zone Out

Whether you’ve been driving for a while or you have something on your mind, you may end up zoning out and running a red light. The routine of going back and forth between home and work makes it easy to get lost in your thoughts. If you find your mind wandering, you should try taking different routes for staying focused.

Eliminate Distractions

From texting to eating behind the wheel, distractions make you vulnerable to jumping red lights. It’s imperative to eliminate such distractions to drive safely. Pay attention to the road ahead, and don’t get distracted by your phone or GPS.

Monitor the Light

Has the light been green for a while? This means it will likely change by the time you reach the intersection. Instead of picking up speed, be prepared to stop.

Slow Down When Lights Turn Yellow

Some drivers tend to speed when the light turns yellow and wind up running a red light. The yellow light is your indication to slow down and stop.

Control Your Speed

Apart from being a violation in itself, speeding also makes you prone to running red lights. 

Don’t Drive Under the Influence

Not to state the obvious, but alcohol and drugs can seriously impair your ability to drive. And running a red light will be the least of your problems if you are caught driving under the influence. Drunk driving can get you charged with a misdemeanor or a felony.

Get Adequate Rest

Falling asleep behind the wheels can be just as dangerous as driving drunk. That’s why you shouldn’t drive without adequate rest. If you feel heavy-eyed, it would be best to pull over and take a power nap before getting back on the road.

Cautiously Move Through Intersections

You don’t just have to worry about you crossing a red light. You also need to spot other distracted drivers. Instead of rushing through the intersection as soon as the light turns green, take a few seconds to look both ways and ensure no one else is running a red light. 

Maybe you were not paying attention, or the roads were deserted, so you ended up running a red light. So now what

First, you need to establish if you were caught by a red light camera. In some states, if your car passes the sensor but doesn’t enter the intersection, you won’t be accused of a violation. On the other hand, if you did cross the intersection, then you’ll receive a ticket via postal mail. Some municipalities may inform you via text or email.

And if you do receive a ticket, it’s not the end of the world. You should know that ignoring the ticket won’t make it disappear but will make the matter worse. If you don’t take any action within the time limit, your penalty will keep on increasing.

Fortunately, paying for the ticket is not the only option. Instead of pleading guilty and paying the fine, you have the right to fight the red light ticket. Understandably, knowing the law and building your defense may be beyond your skill set. But that shouldn’t stop you! You can utilize traffic attorney apps to easily contest traffic tickets.

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