Dade Resolution Passed to Reprogram Lights and Reduce Collisions

The legislation will enforce a clearance where lights in all directions will be red for four seconds

Miami-Dade County Commissioners passed a new resolution Tuesday that will reprogram traffic lights in hopes of reducing car crashes at intersections.

The legislation, sponsored by County Commissioner Joe A. Martinez, will enforce an "all red clearance interval" where traffic lights in all directions will be red for four seconds between signal changes.

"As people become accustomed to it, it should make the red light cameras obsolete," Martinez said.

A study by the American Automobile Association and the city of Detroit found that the measure would be effective in reducing collisions because there would be a greater separation between moving vehicles, the county said.

Martinez created the resolution because he thought that the red light tickets in Miami-Dade County were becoming unfair.

"There are other ways than punishing you with a ticket," Martinez said.

The clearance interval would be enforced at high-crash, high-volume intersections in Miami-Dade County where motorists try to "beat" red lights, the county said. The intersections and exactly how the lights will be reprogrammed will be determined by Mayor Carlos Gimenez within the next two months.

Accidents at intersections account for 48 percent of injury-related traffic accidents nationwide and cause 800 deaths yearly, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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