Red-light runners beware. Police officers in Palo Alto and throughout Santa Clara County will be watching -- and writing citations this week.
It's "National Stop on Red Week," an effort to reduce crashes and heighten awareness of the dangers of red-light running. There were 6,839 injuries and 19 deaths due to red-light running in Santa Clara county between 1994 and 1998, according to a California Highway Patrol study. Red-light running accounted for 22 percent of all crashes, the study noted.
Monitoring takes place on Aug. 5 through Aug. 11. Thirteen city and county law enforcement agencies will be involved in the operation, according to a press advisory from the Traffic Safe Communities Network in Santa Clara County.
The highest risk intersections are being targeted for installation of "rat box" devices that are wired into traffic-signal controllers and allow enforcement officers to easily identify, pursue and cite red-light runners. Violators are fined $100, according to the California Vehicle Code.
In Palo Alto, the targeted intersections are:
• Arastradero Road at Terman Drive
• El Camino Real intersections at California Avenue, Embarcadero Road, Page Mill Road, Arastradero Road, Los Robles Avenue and Stanford Avenue
• Middlefield Road at University Avenue
• Middlefield Road at San Antonio Road
• Foothill Expressway at Oregon Avenue
• Oregon Avenue at Middlefield Road
• Embarcadero Road at St. Francis Drive