Illinois red lights only work if everyone obeys them. Unfortunately,
however, Illinois drivers have a problem with red light running. Do you
remember playing the game "Red Light, Green Light" as a child? Most
people played that game growing up, but as adults, many of us seem to
have forgotten how to stop for a red light. For example,
according to the Federal Highway Administration, approximately 100,000
accidents and 1,000 deaths occur nationwide each year because one of
the drivers involved was in too much of a hurry to stop at a red
Drivers rely on Illinois red lights to tell them when it's safe to be
in an intersection. If you breeze on through a red light, cars coming
from the opposite direction are not going to be expecting you to be
there. Drivers tend to let their guard down when they have a green
light, because in theory that should mean they are protected.
Therefore, if you choose to run an Illinois red light, there is a
strong likelihood that you and another car will try to occupy the same
space in the intersection at the same time. Since the laws of physics
prevent two objects from occupying the same space at the same time, the
result is an auto accident. No matter how much of a hurry you are in,
running a red light simply isn't worth it. An accident will slow you
down far more than simply waiting out the light would.
Crashes caused by running Illinois red lights are almost always T-bone
crashes, where the front of one vehicle collides with side of another.
Since the side of an automobile is one of the weakest points, it is far
more vulnerable to an impact. This makes T-bone crashes especially
dangerous and more likely to cause injury or death than other types of
crashes with similar force.
In 2006, according to the National Campaign to Stop Red Light Running,
approximately 171,000 crashes were caused by people intentionally
running red lights. More than half of the crash victims who received
fatal injuries in a red light running crash were other drivers or
pedestrians. Because of these statistics, Illinois law enforcement
treats running red lights as a serious crime.