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5. Going through a red light at a deserted intersection

Last updated: March 7, 2016

By , Insure.com

Deserted intersection

Most people have experienced the uncertainly of a deserted intersection at 3 a.m. and for whatever reason, your vehicle didn’t trip the sensor. So, you sit with no other cars in sight, wondering whether you would see some flashing lights in the rear-view mirror if you proceeded – with caution – through the light.

Some states have allowed this for motorcycles since they may have a harder time tripping the sensor, but responsible drivers of automobiles could be trusted with that, as well. If most people can figure out four-way stops, this should be a piece of cake, right?

Legislation for motorcycles (some include mopeds and bicycles) to run stale red lights, nicknamed “dead red” or “safe-on-red” laws, can vary a bit in each of the 16 states that allow it. In states that have time limits, you must wait anywhere from 45 seconds to 3 minutes. Other states require you to have waited an “unreasonable” amount of time, wait until it’s safe, or wait for one or two cycles of light. All of these seem reasonable for a single car at a deserted red light.

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