According to the National Highway Safety Traffic Administration, drivers running red lights causes 950 deaths annually. That's exactly why local law enforcement agencies are taking part in Target Red, which is a program where police officers 'target' red light running drivers.
The Governor's Highway Safety Program sponsors Target Red, which was started in West Virginia.
"In Raleigh County there was an incident where a lady was seriously injured, and her church got together and said 'hey we have to do something about this.' They started this project and said this is going to work, and it has,” explained Georgia Hatfield, the Regional Program Coordinator for the Governor’s Highway Safety Program.
Hatfield said the campaign will run until August 17 and law enforcement will focus on high traffic areas where they see problems with drivers running red lights.
"What we do is ask them to think about red lights in their area that cause the most crashes, and those are the ones highly watched. These few weeks gives officers a chance to site people who are technically running red lights and causing others harm,” explained Hatfield. “The rest of the year the officers and deputies of course watch for it all year long as well."
Hatfield said these areas will be watched closely and anyone who violates the red light code will be cited.
"When any vehicle is occupying any part of the intersection when the light turns red, that is considered red light running, and that is when they are setting themselves up for a citation,” Hatfield explained.
Hatfield said each police department was given a chance before Target Red to watch intersections and survey how many drivers ran the lights. When the program is over they will do it again to see if that number goes down.
She said the results of the campaign should be in by the end of August.