Why Is Turning Right on Red Considered Running a Red Light?

Why Is Turning Right on Red Considered Running a Red Light?

August 4, 2020

Red light cameras reveal that a driver runs a red light every 20 minutes. This increases during peak times, when impatience and frustration take over on crowded commutes. However, many of these incidents of red light running in Lubbock, TX arise not out of a need to break laws, but out of simple ignorance. This is most apparent with red light running while turning right. Here is an explanation of red light running and why you need to be careful when turning right.

Definition of red light running

If a driver enters the intersection when a light turns red, that is considered red light running. This does not apply if you entered an intersection on a green light to turn left, only to have the light turn red.

Right turns result in the most red light running offenses in Lubbock, TX. In places where drivers may turn right on red after a stop, many drivers either roll through before making their turn or do not bother stopping at all. This lack of a complete stop results in a traffic violation. The same is true when drivers turn right on red where that is not permitted.

Red light runners tend to be young and male with a previous record of auto accidents or DUI. Many people who commit this offense are impaired or recently faced a license suspension. However, it can literally be anyone who violates this law. While a AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety survey indicated that 85 percent of drivers considered running red lights dangerous, around 31 percent admitted they have done this within the last 30 days.

Dangers of running red lights

Red lights are there for our safety, and running them is dangerous. In 2018, 846 people were killed due to drivers running red lights, while an estimated 139,000 were injured in crashes involving red light running.

Many states have responded to this problem with red light cameras. This technology photographs vehicles and license plates of drivers who run the red light. Once recorded, a police officer often reviews the photos to make sure there are no mistakes and the vehicle is truly in violation. If so, the ticket is issued via mail, and drivers can either dispute it or pay the fine.

However, there may still be reasons to appeal a ticket. If you were not operating your vehicle at the time, you can avoid the fine by revealing the identity of the driver. You can also seek exemptions if you were moving out of the way of an emergency vehicle or there were no warning signs where they are required to be posted. Unfortunately, privacy challenges are not effective, because courts have ruled drivers have no expectation of privacy while they are on the road.

Red light cameras are used in Texas, and red light running may result in a fine. If you feel you have grounds to challenge a red light ticket, you should speak with a criminal defense attorney.

The Law Office of Rob Biggers practices criminal defense in Lubbock, TX. Please contact us today if you have questions after receiving a ticket for red light running.

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