3,000 urban accidents blamed on drivers running red lights

Shmuel Abuav, CEO of Or Yarok, said the tendency of Israeli drivers to ignore red lights had taken on epidemic proportions.

January 26, 2010 00:33
1 minute read.
Red light

red light traffic light 58. (photo credit: Courtesy)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Three thousand traffic accidents in Israel's largest cities between 2007 and 2009 were caused by drivers running red lights, according to a new study by the Or Yarok (Green Light) road safety organization, published this week.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

Road accidents caused by disregarding traffic lights made up more than half of all accidents in the 20 largest Israeli cities, the study said.

Shmuel Abuav, CEO of Or Yarok, said the tendency of Israeli drivers to ignore red lights had taken on epidemic proportions.

"[It] has turned into a national problem, which exacts a costly price in blood. It is one of the four most common offenses," he said.

Abuav added that the offense was "one of the most dangerous kinds. This is a gamble with one's life. It's entering a danger zone despite being aware of the risk."

Or Yarok's study said that in Israel's five biggest cities - Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa, Rishon Lezion and Ashdod - 1,925 road accidents over a two-year period were attributed to disregard for traffic lights.

In Tel Aviv alone, 777 accidents were blamed on the offense, while 456 traffic accidents in Jerusalem were linked to a failure to heed a light.

Or Yarok cited a survey carried out by the Geocartography Institute which found that 70 percent of respondents, members of general public, reported having seen a motorist run a red light over the past year. The respondents said the offense was likely caused by an attempt by the driver to make the light before it changed from yellow to red.

Some 60% of respondents said they did not expect police to penalize drivers who ignored red lights.

"This worrying figure shows that police enforcement ... does not carry a sufficient deterrence," Or Yarok said.

"Police enforcement must be increased, and more cameras should be installed near traffic lights. Today, there are only 47 cameras installed at Israel's 1,000 traffic junctions with lights. The cameras will contribute to deterrence and cause drivers to think twice before driving into a junction during a red light," Abuav said.

The Traffic Police declined to comment.

Related Content

Jisr az-Zarq
April 3, 2014
Residents of Jisr az-Zarqa beckon Israel Trail hikers to enjoy their town