Study finds hundreds of Birmingham drivers running red lights

Filed under: Campaign

In September 2023, 32 Better Streets for Birmingham members from across the city volunteered to watch 21 different junctions for drivers running red lights. They collectively volunteered for 50 sessions, totalling a huge 44 hours and 56 minutes.

During these 50 sessions, we observed 576 people jumping red lights. That’s one just over every three times the lights changed to red, or one every 4 minutes and 41 seconds. If each of these drivers had been fined £50, it would have raised £28,800.

Only one junction was observed to have no red light jumpers.

The worst rates of red light jumping were found at busy junctions. Some of these junctions were the location of serious and fatal collisions earlier this year. The worst junction was Hay Mills on Coventry Road, where 69 drivers ran red lights in 70 minutes. This is the same junction that 12-year-old Azaan Khan was killed by a driver while crossing the road in June.

Mr Hussain, a Better Streets for Birmingham member from Yardley, said “I took part in the study because I’m fed up of seeing drivers drive through red lights at local pelican crossings on an almost daily basis, causing danger to pedestrians.”

The study’s findings have been brought to life on our Red Means STOP website, following data visualisation from volunteer designer, Chris Woods.

Tahmeena Suhail, who lives in Hay Mills and is Better Streets for Birmingham’s Vice Chair, said she was “shocked at the number of drivers who blatantly drove through red lights”, adding that the “data is quite likely to be representative of what happens regularly during the day.

“More and more people are getting fed up with the dangers caused by car excess and lax enforcement of standards on our streets. They are joining Better Streets for Birmingham to stand up and take action against the needless danger we are all subjected to as a consequence. And the more people who join us, the stronger our call for change will become.”

Better Streets for Birmingham has pledged to continue campaigning for better standards on our roads, increased resourcing for enforcement, and changes to the layout of our streets to protect pedestrians and other vulnerable road users. Many projects to improve road safety are funded by external grants and we are expecting them to be delivered despite the challenges faced by Birmingham City Council.

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Better Streets for Birmingham

Better Streets for Birmingham is a community group which campaigns for changes to our travel and planning infrastructure to improve the sustainability, efficiency and safety of our streets. We believe that through connecting Birmingham to reduce car dependency, we will make it a more pleasant place to work, live and play.