Thursday, March 4, 2010

Thank You, CCSO

The letter below was featured in the Naples Daily News' Letter to the Editor section.

Take their red-light advice

Editor, Daily News:

I recently attended a senior program at the Golden Gate Community Center.

An officer from the Collier County Sheriff’s Office explained the right-on-red law and the new camera program to enforce it.

It all makes sense. It is an attempt to penalize (fine) those who disobey the law and in the process potentially save lives. It’s simple:

1. If the light is red, stop before the stop bar (that’s the wide white line).

2. Check to make sure it’s safe to proceed (that includes looking for bicyclists).

3. Proceed with caution.

The cameras collect plenty of information. They record your speed as you approach the stop bar. They take a picture of your license plate. They record if you come to a complete stop or a rolling stop; the latter is not legal.

Why are people angry about a law that may save lives? I am now very conscious about slowing down when I approach a potential red light, where I stop — not beyond the stop bar or into a crosswalk — and what other cars are doing (and there are plenty of folks who disobey the law).

I think that drivers in Florida are some of the worst drivers I’ve ever seen, and that includes the Boston area where I come from. Running red lights is a game — a deadly game.

Don’t get me started on drivers who talk on their cell phones while driving. That’s the subject for another letter to the editor.

— Dick Mortenson