Contact Street Smarts
Video urges drivers to obey traffic laws
The Chicago-based Traffic Safety Coalition has released a new video urging motorists to stop at red lights. The video, “Victims of Red Light Running: More than Statistics,” features several people from around the country talking about loved ones ripped from their lives by drivers who ran a red light. The video's goal is to remind motorists about the importance of safe, responsible driving to reduce the number of traffic collisions on local roads. “We share our daughter’s story, not just to memorialize her, but to remind drivers that what seems to be an inconsequential action can forever change countless lives,” said Paul Oberhauser, coalition co-chair, whose daughter Sarah was killed in 2002 when a driver crashed into her car after running a red light. “Losing a child brings unimaginable grief that no parent should have to experience.” The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported 32,367 people died nationwide in traffic crashes in 2011, the non-profit cited. While this represents the lowest number of fatalities since 1949, it accounts for more than 88 deaths each day on the nation's roads. In Santa Cruz County, the coalition cited data from the University of California-Berkeley Transportation Injury Mapping System, which indicated there were eight fatal crashes and more than 500 injury crashes in 2011. Of those collisions, 19 percent were broadside collisions, the type of crash most often caused by red light running.