# How to judge when to stop or increase speed during a yellow when driving in an intersection controlled by a red light camera

Hello,
Now that we have armed with information regarding a particular intersection with red light cameras. How can we judge when to stop and when to increase the speed during a yellow which suddenly shows when you are at a point where you know that you cannot stop but even if you are continuing you are not sure whether the camera will click or not. I always get nervous sometimes when I'm driving at speed of 40.

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Osh
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### Simple - STOP

 You never increase speed for a yellow. If you don't know how much space you need to STOP your car, do us all a favor and park it. If you can stop, stop. If you can't, proceed without acceleration. By asking the question though it tells me you need to consider taking a bus.

### Or

 foghorn.legghorn wrote: You never increase speed for a yellow. If you don't know how much space you need to STOP your car, do us all a favor and park it. If you can stop, stop. If you can't, proceed without acceleration. By asking the question though it tells me you need to consider taking a bus. Or find a vacant parking lot and practice and get to KNOW your car/truck/SUV
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All the worlds indeed a stage and we are merely players. Rush

### You must be kidding or a Troll

 handsome9h wrote: Hello, Now that we have armed with information regarding a particular intersection with red light cameras. How can we judge when to stop and when to increase the speed during a yellow which suddenly shows when you are at a point where you know that you cannot stop but even if you are continuing you are not sure whether the camera will click or not. I always get nervous sometimes when I'm driving at speed of 40. As I write this you are a member for 7 hours, so I suspect a Troll
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"Ceterum autem censeo, Carthaginem esse delendam" “When governments fear the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.”

### What to do

 Now that you know you are approaching a red light camera, don't speed, because you will put yourself into the situation where you can't stop and the yellow timing is running out! Remember to watch out what the other drivers might do. Some of them know about the camera and some don't. This will result in confusion since some drivers go slower and others want to speed up. Glance in the rearview mirror to see if an SUV is behind you going fast, intending to run the light. I don't know what to do in this situation! dobs108

### Attitude people.

 handsome9h - There seems to be people that didn't sleep well last night responding to your query. Ignore them. I don't know the law, but I think as long as you are in an intersection under yellow, you're legal. To me it's more whether you can get through an intersection without getting hit by a green light dragster. I've never gotten a RLC tax.
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Zumo 550 & Zumo 665 My alarm clock is sunshine on chrome.

### Always Slow

 When I come to an intersection with an RLC I always slow on a yellow and stop. I just don't trust the timing of the yellow for me to get through without getting snagged. If someone rear-ends me, then I expect to use the video from the intersection to exonerate me with the insurance company.
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I support the right to keep and arm bears.

### Every situation is going to

 Every situation is going to be different so there is no hard fast rule. Experience and skill determine what to do in any yellow light situation. However as a safe rule, if you are unsure always brake for a yellow.
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Nuvi 360, OS X Lion 10.7

 rkaufmann87 wrote: Every situation is going to be different so there is no hard fast rule. Experience and skill determine what to do in any yellow light situation. However as a safe rule, if you are unsure always brake for a yellow. And it should make no difference whether or not the intersections is camera enforced.

### Forget about the camera

 Drive the speed limit and stop if you are safely able to when the light changes to yellow. If not proceed with caution always watching out, in all directions, for the other nuts out there. Drive safe,
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Harley BOOM GTS, Zumo 665, (2) Nuvi 765Ts, 1450LMT, 1350LM & others | 2019 Harley Ultra Limited Shrine - Peace Officer Dark Blue

### Can you stop safely?

 bear007 wrote: Drive the speed limit and stop if you are safely able to when the light changes to yellow. If not proceed with caution always watching out, in all directions, for the other nuts out there. Drive safe, Agree. If you able able to safely stop without endangering those around you, that is the right decision, regardless of whether there is a red light camera, police car, or ay other factor.

### .

 You should always be driving defensively. Meaning you should know what is around you, entering and leaving the intersection.
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Nuvi 2460LMT.

### Hello right back

 handsome9h wrote: Hello, Welcome to the forum. My opinon has always been, stop, if you can do so safely. It won't be good if you come to a screeching halt with your car in the crosswalk.
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1490LMT 1450LMT 295w

### RLCs might soon include speed sensors, if not already . . .

 http://articles.latimes.com/2010/jan/09/local/la-me-budget-c... I believe California doesn't have speed cameras, only RLCs. Since all good things must come to an end, the Governator floated a plan last year to allow California cities and towns to install speed sensors on existing red light cameras. The idea being to snag drivers who speed up on yellow lights. Of course the real goal was to increase revenue. Thankfully, the proposal was dropped but it might be something to keep in mind if you're in the habit of flooring it to avoid having to stop for a red light as some of those RLCs outside California might have speed sensors installed.

### RLC's

 Use your head and be aware of what's going on around you...No one can give you guidance that would be the same in all cases....
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Bobby....Garmin 2450LM

### Stopping distance

 If you stop the same way at all intersections it should not matter if there are cameras or not. There are more ways to get caught than just cameras, there are unmarked police cars too.
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Don't sweat the petty things and don't pet the sweaty things!

### Speed sensors

 scott_dog wrote: http://articles.latimes.com/2010/jan/09/local/la-me-budget-c... I believe California doesn't have speed cameras, only RLCs. Since all good things must come to an end, the Governator floated a plan last year to allow California cities and towns to install speed sensors on existing red light cameras. The idea being to snag drivers who speed up on yellow lights. Of course the real goal was to increase revenue. Thankfully, the proposal was dropped but it might be something to keep in mind if you're in the habit of flooring it to avoid having to stop for a red light as some of those RLCs outside California might have speed sensors installed. Yes, New York state doesn't have speed cameras, but the red light cameras in my area of Nassau and Suffolk county all have full motion video and speed sensors included. The people reviewing the video (RLC contractors) can see if you speed up on yellow. At this time, they cannot give you a summons for this. dobs108

### Depends ...

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Drivesmart 66, Nuvi 2595LMT (Died), Nuvi 1490T (Died), Nuvi 260 (Died), GPSMAP 195

### wheew!!!!!!!!!!

 Leave your car in the garage,AND USE A TAXI CAB. tHAT WAY WE CAN ALL SLEEP BETTER. jUST A THAUGHT. DE CLIFF N8DII
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I may have my user name and password confused or switched! Can I get confimation of my user name????

### If Driving 40 makes you nervous, Drive 39 instead!

 handsome9h wrote: I always get nervous sometimes when I'm driving at speed of 40. Just kidding! You may want to check out this study: "Investigating Critical Driver Behavioral Patterns during the Yellow Phase at Signalized Intersections” - http://attap.umd.edu/bbs/data/publications/liuyue_ieee08_1.p...
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Garmin nüvi 3597LMTHD, 3760 LMT, & 255LMT, - "Those who wish for fairness without first protecting freedom will end up with neither freedom nor fairness." - Milton Friedman

### Stopping

 As an example if I'm traveling at 40 mph thats 4 car lentghs if light is turning yellow I have the time to stop any less then I'll go thru.

### Traffic light law

 dave817 wrote: I don't know the law, but I think as long as you are in an intersection under yellow, you're legal. To me it's more whether you can get through an intersection without getting hit by a green light dragster. I've never gotten a RLC tax. The law is different in different states. I don't know about every state, but in Wisconsin if you do not clear the intersection before the light turns red you can be ticketed, in Kentucky as long as the light is still yellow it is legal to enter the intersection even if the light turns red after you are in the intersection. The way I work it is: drive the speed limit, when the light turns yellow stop if you can do it safely, if not proceed through the intersection at the current speed. I know I have irritated drivers behind me by stopping when they wanted to accelerate and "blast" through the intersection on a stale yellow.

### When i approach a red light

 When i approach a red light camera controlled intersection, i try to maintain a slightly lower speed so that if i need too stop when i see the light change to yellow then i can still safely stop depending on how close to the intersection i am. if i'm too close, then i can speed up slightly to make it across. there is a few seconds in time before the camera can take the photo once it changes to red, so by that time i should have cleared. i definitely dont want to jam on the brakes if i approach the intersection at a higher speed and the light turns yellow. i had to learn a whole new way of driving across these types of intersections which is probably a good thing

### I also find the countdown

 I also find the countdown timers on some of the crosswalks very useful, to bad all crosswalks didn't have them.
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All the worlds indeed a stage and we are merely players. Rush

### Count 0...

 d-moo70 wrote: I also find the countdown timers on some of the crosswalks very useful, to bad all crosswalks didn't have them. Doesn't normally the count turn "0" before it turns yellow? That's my experience with them. Maybe locational settings.

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JMoo On

### The ones I've seen

 LongAce wrote: d-moo70 wrote: I also find the countdown timers on some of the crosswalks very useful, to bad all crosswalks didn't have them. Doesn't normally the count turn "0" before it turns yellow? That's my experience with them. Maybe locational settings. in Ohio hit "0" about a second before the light goes to yellow. These are a great help in judging what is about to happen with the traffic signal. If these are not present, I will always approach a red light intersection at a slower speed, especially if the light has been green for a long period of time.
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With God, all things are possible. ——State motto of the Great State of Ohio

### back when dirt was new

 maddog67 wrote: LongAce wrote: d-moo70 wrote: I also find the countdown timers on some of the crosswalks very useful, to bad all crosswalks didn't have them. Doesn't normally the count turn "0" before it turns yellow? That's my experience with them. Maybe locational settings. in Ohio hit "0" about a second before the light goes to yellow. These are a great help in judging what is about to happen with the traffic signal. If these are not present, I will always approach a red light intersection at a slower speed, especially if the light has been green for a long period of time. Back when dirt was new and the third digit in the year was ready to change from 6 to 7, I was enrolled in a defensive driving course. All personnel at our base had to comply, but one point that has stuck with me over the many years is the "stale green" concept. It said treat every signal where you did not see the light turn green as one ready to turn yellow. It seems this is not taught anymore.
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### Yes, but...

 Box Car wrote: ...[Use] the "stale green" concept... treat every signal where you did not see the light turn green as one ready to turn yellow. I think that way, too, and it is useful. And often, you can also tell a stale green is about to go yellow because cars coming the other way are lined up and there is only one other straggler or two the way you're going. But sometimes drivers get into trouble by counting on the opposite. "I just saw this light turn green; I don't need to worry about a yellow. I should be able to make it through." Of course, green lights can go yellow after only a few seconds even though they may normally stay green for a longer time at that intersection for a variety of reasons including an approaching train or emergency vehicle that controls the light, traffic sensors, and messed up gizmos. In our day, green and yellow lights were predictably timed. Not so much any more.
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JMoo On

 Box Car wrote: ...[Use] the "stale green" concept... treat every signal where you did not see the light turn green as one ready to turn yellow. I have never heard that concept before but it is something I will now be telling my 17 and 19 year old grandsons. Combining this concept with this (also) excellent advice dagarmin wrote: Planning ahead by continually thinking about your speed and distance and a possible yellow light this way should drain your anxiety out of the split-second decision once the light does turn yellow; you've bought some extra time to decide. As you practice doing this repeatedly, your timing and judgment get better. It helps if you also know the intersection. Allow a greater margin of safety for dangerous intersections where speed and high traffic lead to lots of accidents should help everyone of us.

### Redlight Camera POI

 I have set the proximity alert in the Redlight Camera POI to 1400 feet. When I get the alert warning me of a redlight camera coming up, I start to ease off the accelerator so that I can be sure I won't run the light. Hopefully, this is what you meant by your question and not that you don't know when to slow down or begin to stop when you come to a yellow traffic signal. Surely, you learned that when you learned to drive.

### Good Setting

 Setting your RLC POI's alerts to longer distances is a great way to prepare to have to stop for the light. Mine is set for 1500 ft. Going through yellow lights can cause accidents. Meaning of STEADY YELLOW: The light is changing from green to red. Be ready to stop for the red light.

### slow down

 handsome9h wrote: Hello, ... I always get nervous sometimes when I'm driving at speed of 40. my dad taught me this rule when i began to learn driving, think this applies to you based on your writeup.. if you do not feel you have good control, then reduce your speed to where you feel comfortable with. I feel this is very helpful as I have been reading so many young kids crashed because they did not know how to slow down. if above suggestion still makes you nervous, then consider stop driving. GPS/POI stuff is for reference only, not to control your driving behavior.

### I'm almost too cautious in

 I'm almost too cautious in RLC intersections. ...if there is a such thing.

### Practice planning ahead, and stop speeding up on yellows

 As I was approaching the intersection, the light turned yellow. I remembered your detailed analysis and suggestions so I picked up my smart phone to look at your article... dagarmin wrote: It's actually a very good question. It's one every new driver at least should be asking himself as part of the process of learning to drive, not to avoid RLC tickets, but to drive through intersections safely. 1. As you approach an intersection with a green light, do so at no more than ... 228. Keep your speed safe for conditions, legal, and only steady or slowing as you approach a green or yellow light. But by the time I had finished reading it, picked up my calculator to figure out if I had the time to cross the intersection at my current speed, I saw the flash. Oh well, I guess I will have to read it again then!

### Drive defensively

 I agree that speeding up on yellows is probably not a good idea. You can set the alarm to go off sooner if you need more time. The RLC info shouldn't change the way you drive so much as making you more aware, if that makes sense.

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JMoo On

### Some states have laws for

 Some states have laws for 'racing against traffic control device' which is the term for trying to beat the yellow light before it turns red by speeding up. I decide by how long the yellow been on before it turns red. State of MA have really long red light wait time...
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-Chris

### observation

 This is purely an observation, as with anything else, there are many variables. I've noticed, if there is a dedicated turn lane as part of the intersection, as soon as the car is even with the markings on the pavement, that is the point in which you have to decide if you have enough time to make it through the intersection. If you're at the very beginning, going the speed limit and the light turns yellow, you have enough time to stop. If you're halfway past the turn lane and the light turns yellow, you have enough time to go through (unless the lane is abnormally long). The above applies to faster speeds. If the speed limit is 30 mph, I would recommend stopping, unless you're at the very end of the intersection. Never speed up. I do wish that intersections would have markings that show where you can begin safely stopping when the light turns yellow.

### That is a great idea

 twix wrote: I do wish that intersections would have markings that show where you can begin safely stopping when the light turns yellow. That is a great idea and would not cost much to implement (say compared to the countdown timers that some jurisdictions use)

### .

 jgermann wrote: twix wrote: I do wish that intersections would have markings that show where you can begin safely stopping when the light turns yellow. That is a great idea and would not cost much to implement (say compared to the countdown timers that some jurisdictions use) Nice idea but the stopping distance changes with speed so the "safe distance to stop" would also change. They would have to post something to the effect of "safe to stop at posted speed limit".
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Nuvi 2460LMT.

### .

 jgermann wrote: twix wrote: I do wish that intersections would have markings that show where you can begin safely stopping when the light turns yellow. That is a great idea and would not cost much to implement (say compared to the countdown timers that some jurisdictions use) Nice idea but the stopping distance changes with speed so the "safe distance to stop" would also change. They would have to post something to the effect of "safe to stop at posted speed limit".
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Nuvi 2460LMT.

### Each road would be different, but

 pwohlrab wrote: Nice idea but the stopping distance changes with speed so the "safe distance to stop" would also change. They would have to post something to the effect of "safe to stop at posted speed limit". An assumption would be that each road would have the marking based on the posted speed for that road. Your improvement "safe to stop at posted speed limit" would cover that.

### stop

 You better stop, not all yellow lights are the same.

### various situations

 jgermann wrote: pwohlrab wrote: Nice idea but the stopping distance changes with speed so the "safe distance to stop" would also change. They would have to post something to the effect of "safe to stop at posted speed limit". An assumption would be that each road would have the marking based on the posted speed for that road. Your improvement "safe to stop at posted speed limit" would cover that. this involves many factors and complex calculations. stop distances are different from dump truck to small sedan. wet pavement vs. dry pavement.... slow down and exercise caution is best approaches to reduce the risks of accident and fine.

### @ abin - What about count down timers

 abin wrote: this involves many factors and complex calculations. stop distances are different from dump truck to small sedan. wet pavement vs. dry pavement.... Would you apply the same objections to count down timers? I called them "objections" because of the context in which you are presenting them. They are all valid points and apply to the situation where nothing at all is done - a situation in which each driver must take a guess at what the duration of the yellow light will be (and if from out of town, guesses as to whether this place has an "all red") and then decide waht to do. Your points are true but don't they apply to every situation. Twix suggested, and I supported, a way to give the driver more data from which to make a better informed decision.

### it's really not a good idea

 jgermann wrote: twix wrote: I do wish that intersections would have markings that show where you can begin safely stopping when the light turns yellow. That is a great idea and would not cost much to implement (say compared to the countdown timers that some jurisdictions use) It's not a good idea as the marking then could be used for a suit. There's just too many variables besides weather, there's the mechanical condition of the car. But then that's the Nanny-state mentality to make the city/county/state/province paint a line. You can't fix stupidity.
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### @ Box Car Would the same apply to Countdown timers?

 Box Car wrote: It's not a good idea as the marking then could be used for a suit. And what would the basis of a suit be?

### This is the US

 Does there need to be a basis? Remember the one (for lack of a better moniker) that sued McDonalds because the expectedly hot coffee in his cup spilled in his lap, and he burned his boys? He would be the first to complain when the coffee is cold... The sad part is he won. Now "The Arches" have to write "Caution: Hot Liquid" on insulated hot beverage cups... They're insulated for a reason, DUH!
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Striving to make the NYC Metro area project the best.

### Understand, but

 camerabob wrote: Does there need to be a basis? Understand, but wondered if Box Car had a reasonable basis. I suppose someone could have already sued because the yellow light was not 10 seconds or something like that. I just do not see a reasonable basis for Box Car's comment (although there may indeed be one), so I asked.

### Yellow light

 I believe that the general rule is that for each 10 miles of the speed limit the yellow light stays lit for 1 second. If the speed limit is 30 MPH then the yellow should be lit for about 3 seconds. Don't quote me on this but I believe that is a general rule.
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