Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Red Light Camera Laws | Shorter Yellow Lights | My Near Death! ~~~Nancy

... Can it be that the 'Red Light Camera Law' causes more traffic accidents at intersections, because of the shortened duration of yellow lights? A shorter 'yellow light' signal makes for more dollars for the city's pockets! And, it almost caused my demise! ~~~Nancy

Your Health And Tech Friend

"... has long known that

the exploitation of short yellow light times is a common practice in communities using red light ticket cameras.

The Stop Short Yellow Lights Project is designed to identify and publicize the locations where the use of short yellow light timing is

being used to bolster ticket camera revenue." ... see this section below ...

Donations to The Cleveland Courage Fund

for Gina, Michelle and Amanda of Cleveland Ohio USA
Please help them to recover, with prayers, and donations if you are able. 
Thank you. ~~~Nancy

My 'Traffic-Light Incident | Chicago IL USA ~~~Nancy

Red Light Cameras | Short Yellow Lights | Intersection Safety ~~~Nancy

At a 4-way highway intersection on the outskirts of the city of Chicago, IL is where my daughter and I

came the closest to losing our lives! I've lived and driven in a major city all of my life, Cleveland, OH so
I didn't think that I was a stranger to driving a car in city traffic. That is until I drove in Chicago about 6 or 7 years ago! It was a very close call!

When driving to see a dance recital performance of our friend's young daughter, in the city of Chicago I was in a hurry, running a bit late. As I approached an intersection in the turning lane, my intention was to 'hit it' when the light turned yellow in order to make the left turn. I was not aware of the differences in the traffic light patterns of Cleveland and Chicago. Many years before this, Cleveland had adopted a new traffic light system - there would be a 'delay' in between the red light of one direction of traffic and the green light which directed the traffic from the other set of lanes. Essentially, a longer 'yellow' signal.

Ah Ha! At researching the 'yellow light delay' for this article, I came upon what might have been one factor in this close call.
Taken from text, below on this page:
"...the exploitation of short yellow light times is a common practice in communities using red light ticket cameras."

Ah Ha! The Red Light Camera Laws! I didn't expect that I would have found this - it is a hot topic in Ohio at this time! Most likely in all states and other countries too! I believe it is on the ballot in the upcoming election November 2014.

"Currently 21 states and Washington, D.C.,

use automated cameras at traffic intersections to catch violations such as running through red lights and stopping over white lines. While the cameras bring in thousands of extra dollars, drivers and some government officials argue they are inaccurate and rip people off. NBC's Tom Costello reports."
By Lisa Riordan Seville and Hannah Rappleye, NBC News
Drivers dread it -- that flash as they try to speed through a yellow traffic light. It’s a red light camera, and a signal that a ticket is on the way.
"A rarity 15 years ago, red light cameras have become ubiquitous in many U.S. cities. Communities in 24 states and Washington, D.C., now use the cameras to try to decrease illegal -- and sometimes deadly -- traffic violations" Read more at:

The yellow signal

"(1) Vehicular traffic, streetcars, and trackless trolleys facing a steady circular yellow or yellow arrow signal are thereby warned that the related green movement is being terminated or that a red indication will be exhibited immediately thereafter when vehicular traffic, streetcars, and trackless trolleys shall not enter the intersection." - See more at:

The paragraph above is taken from An Ohio Government Transportation website. That paragraph also tells me, that I should not enter the intersection: and, that is in Ohio! The delay must just be a courtesy!

I did not know that Chicago did not have this 'delay' opportunity; until that day and that moment where I was actually at an intersection - facing a yellow light.

A delay in the traffic light directional signals, provides just a couple of moments opportunity for a person to navigate a turn within the intersection. This pause was adopted in my city many years ago. I had no reason to believe that this same window of opportunity wouldn't be available to me - at the time that I approached the traffic light in Chicago. I hadn't driven within the city proper to speak of, only upon entering the city several days prior to this. This was my first encounter with inner-city traffic. I believe that I was just outside of the inner city of Chicago. Oh boy, is that a tough time to figure out a traffic light difference. Oh boy was I in trouble, as well as my passenger!

My passenger was my daughter, Delilah, she was maybe twelve-year old at the time. She and I were visiting friends in Chicago. We were headed to see the recital - a dance recital of a family friend. I'd mapquested the directions and we were on our way and running a little late.

A Related Note On Yellow Lights

What is the Stop Short Yellow Lights Project?
"The NMA Foundation has long known that

the exploitation of short yellow light times is a common practice in communities using red light ticket cameras.

The Stop Short Yellow Lights Project is designed to identify and publicize the locations where the use of short yellow light timing is

being used to bolster ticket camera revenue."

What Does The Duration Of A Yellow Light Have To Do With Accident Prevention?

The positive effect of increasing the yellow light time at a troublesome intersection (an increase of one second can reduce violations by 50%) is undisputed by even the most zealous supporters of red-light cameras. Nevertheless, despite clear evidence that is unsafe to do so, several cities have been caught shortening yellow light times to increase red-light camera profits."

- See more at: - See more at:

My daughter's head was just about the height of the dashboard at that time - however, she could see out of the passenger side window. At the moment that I was ready to shoot out into the intersection - I advanced to just short of the light - and instantly, traffic came at us from up ahead in the oncoming lanes - three lanes of traffic in all directions. In the car which was approaching most near me;

I could see the face of the woman at the wheel. Just for an instant our eyes met.

I actually felt - for the first time in my life, what it must feel like to be a trapped animal in the wild. Adrenaline just shot through my entire body, I think that was why my senses were so heightened. I could see far in the distance very well! What also came into my visual awareness was the face of a woman in the car off to my right; this was quite a distance away, but, I could see a woman's face. The words that I read into these faces were, "we are on our way, you best be ready". I don't remember if there was compassion, I recall only awareness. Awareness that I was there and that they were going to be advancing. Looking back it is very clear to me that traffic in Chicago stops for no man, or woman or child. Two words came out of my mouth, "Delilah, pray." And I knew that she would. I knew that prayer was quite necessary.

At this very moment, which is seven or eight years later - a warm knot has come into my stomach at the thought that went through my mind at that split second: "How can I possibly navigate in to this turn - in time to be ahead of the traffic that was to come, from two different directions? How"?

Ever since that time in Chicago when I am driving on the familiar streets and highways of Cleveland, I am most aware of when and how, people will wait and give a car the opportunity to come into a lane; change lanes, etc. I can see the courtesy given one person, by another person. In Cleveland there are 'people' behind the wheels' of cars. In Chicago there is traffic with vehicles just going. Going to where they are headed. There seems to be no cognisance that there are people behind the wheels of other cars.

Does the sheer volume of traffic make the difference? There isn't an inch, visually - between vehicles in the city traffic in Chicago. In Cleveland even when we had rush hour traffic, well I didn't drive that much in our city traffic - pre 1974, when our city had a lot of traffic. I graduated from high school in 1974. However, Chicago must have had a similar transition in employment as Cleveland had. All of America lost their industry in the same time span from outsourcing of jobs. In about 1976, I - for the first time experienced what it felt like to not get the job. I'd applied for a job and, didn't get it. This hadn't happened for me; or anyone in those days.

What caused these job losses?

Table 1 shows the manufacturing industries with the largest job losses in the 1978-2007 period.[3] .

What caused these job losses? In reacting to Steve Hansen’s article, John Lounsbury pointed out: Now, to be fair, not all the employment decline was due to increased employment overseas. Trade deficits remained fairly benign by 21st century standards. Employment declined significantly because of productivity improvements as more and more automation replaced manual labor.[4] So let’s look at job-saving automation. In the 1987 to 2007 period, manufacturing value added output has increased by 123% while employment has fallen by 21%. This suggests an overall productivity increase of 181% for the manufacturing sector, and it would have been greater if the data had gone back to 1978. So where in manufacturing were productivity gains greatest? Probably in electronics and computers.
Read more at:

This industrial loss had to have affected the city traffic across America. But, I can tell you - Chicago, Illinois has traffic. And the traffic stops, for no man!

Obviously, I am writing this blog post - in 2014 so my daughter and I did not perish at that intersection in Chicago that day. At the time, I did not know if we would get through that light without experiencing the

old Malachi Crunch!

(see below). I did not know.


Malachi Crunch

is a situation that I learned about from watching the television show "Happy Days". The idea is that, two vehicles coming from opposite directions, smash into another vehicle - at the same time! I thought this was our fate. But we prayed. And I got through that intersection.

"... He tells Richie to tell Howard to delay the start of the derby. Richie tells Howard about the situation. Potsie sings "America the Beautiful" as the derby is set to begin. The Malachi Brothers arrive and they want the derby to start. Richie announces the other entrants and reads the rules of the contest. Pinky arrives in her #7 car and Fonzie in his #6 car. Pinky tells Fonzie that she doesn't want to wear a helmet. Marion says, "Gentleman, start your stock". The derby begins and Fonzie and Pinky talk over walkie talkies. Fonzie's car stalls, but he is able to start the car by hitting the dashboard with his hand and escapes the

Malachi Crunch

. Six cars remain and Rocco throws some flour into Lefty Banducci's face and they take him out with the Malachi Crunch. Rocco tries the same stunt on the Fonz, but the Fonz pulls out a hair dryer and blows it back at him. Two teams remain (Fonzie and Pinky and the Malachi Brothers) in the competition. Pinky stalls and she goes out to fix her engine and the Malachi Crunch strikes her car. Pinky is hurt and taken to the hospital for x-rays and gives Fonzie her pink scarf...." ... to this page ...

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It is not my intention to drive in the city of Chicago again! Or any city that has a similar traffic system. And I appreciate my own city! I've lived in this city all of my life, outside of a 'New York minute' in 76/77 (went to Sacramento California for a minute). And, I have lived in the nearby city of Euclid, OH for maybe two years, at one point in the 1980's. I am happy with my city and used to it's own traffic difficulties, which are minimal. The people here are great also. I've got 'home town pride'!


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