Say the legislature doesn’t get around to outlawing red-light cameras. Rep. Larry Ahern wants to buy drivers some time: with longer yellow lights.
Ahern, R-St. Petersburg, has a proposal (HB 145) to put into state law minimum durations for yellow traffic lights at intersections. The times would range between three and six seconds, depending on the speed limit at the intersection. State transportation officials would have to put up signs to alert drivers at intersections with posted speed limits of at least 55 mph. Ahern’s proposal specifically says that traffic infractions for red-light running are unenforceable if the intersection doesn’t have yellow lights that last long enough. The measure passed its long committee stop today, with one dissenting vote, Rep. Evan Jenne, D-Fort Lauderdale. He said there were too many uncertainties about the financial impact for recalibrating lights and putting up signs. The Senate has a similar provision for minimum yellow light durations tucked away in a large transportation bill. A House measure to outlaw red light cameras all together is on its way to the floor vote but a companion proposal in the Senate has stalled.