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Dr. Delay: Study proves Tampa Bay drivers are among the most reckless in the U.S.

Two intersections are among the worst for running red lights
A study found that two of the worst intersections in the country for running red lights are in the Tampa Bay area. [Tampa Bay Times]
A study found that two of the worst intersections in the country for running red lights are in the Tampa Bay area. [Tampa Bay Times]
Published Sep. 17, 2019

A colleague shared a AAA Foundation study featured in USA TODAY and the Doc just couldn’t pass it up.

Bear with me as I take a short break from addressing your roadway concerns to share one of my own.

The study examined the top 10 intersections nationwide with the highest number of cars running red lights in 2018 as part of a larger analysis that found that red light running deaths hit a 10-year high.

And guess what? Two of those 10 intersections are right here in Tampa Bay.

According to reports from Verra Mobility, the parent company of American Traffic Solutions, Tampa’s eastbound E Hillsborough Avenue intersection at N 22nd Street near Erwin Technical College ranked fifth with a total number of 7,674 violations in 2018, and New Port Richey’s northbound U.S. 19 intersection at Trouble Creek Road came in eighth with 6,380 violations in 2018.

Do the math.

That’s roughly about 21 and 17 motorists that run those red lights in Hillsborough and Pasco in one day.

The Doc feels your pain. We all have places to be and people to see, and sometimes we don’t feel like enduring long traffic lights.

But this is absurd.

Red still means stop, yellow still means slow down, and it’s obvious we know what green means.

The data examined only cars driving directly through an intersection as the light turned red. It did not include cars turning right on red.

Let’s do the right thing Tampa Bay and just stop at the red light.

It’s not hard. It’ll save you some money and it could save lives.

TRAFFIC UPDATES AND ROAD CLOSURES

HERNANDO COUNTY:

  • Day closures continue every day through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. and night closures continue through Friday from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m along Interstate 75 south at U.S. 98/State Road 50 (Exit 301) to Sumter County line
  • Day closures continue every day through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and night closures continue through Friday from 6:30 p.m. to 6 a.m.
  • Daily lane closures with flagging operations continue through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Croom Rital Road under Interstate 75

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY:

  • Lane closures with flagging operations at Sligh Avenue under Interstate 75 Saturday from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Lane closures along Interstate 275 from west of State Road 60 (Exit 39) to Lois Avenue (Exit 40B) continue through Friday from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m.
  • Lane closures continue from Madison Avenue/Pendola Point Road to Port Sutton Road through Saturday 24 hours per day for U.S. 41 intersection reconstruction.
  • Intermittent lane closures continue from Bullfrog Creek to Denver Street through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. for U.S. 41 drainage and sidewalk installation
  • Lane closures continue from Florida Avenue to Ida Street through Friday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. for U.S. Business 41 (Highland Avenue and W Violet Street) roadway/pedestrian improvements
  • Buchman Highway/Sam Allen Road intersection closed to all through-traffic for two months until late November. Access to business and residential properties will be maintained. The intersection will be closed for various construction activities, including replacement of the CSX railroad tracks, utility relocations, and roadway construction associated with the Sam Allen Road widening project. Buchman Highway (SR 39A) through-traffic will be detoured to Alexander Street (SR 39), using Monroe and Franklin streets. Sam Allen Road (CR 580) through-traffic will be detoured using Alexander (SR 39), Franklin and Monroe streets, Buchman Highway (SR 39A), N Frontage Road, and Park Road. Detour signs will be used to assist motorists through the detours. Motorists should expect heavier than normal traffic volumes on these roads during this closure.
  • Road closure at Sun City Center Boulevard (SR 674) for Del Webb Boulevard West drainage installation Friday.
  • Intermittent lane closures continue through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Bullfrog Creek to Denver Street for US 41 drainage and sidewalk installation
  • Nightly lane closures continue at SR 589 (Veteran’s Expressway) through Saturday from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m. for SR 60 operational improvements

PASCO COUNTY:

  • One of two lanes closed approaching State Road 56/I-275 northbound (Exit 59) and I-75 northbound (Exit 275) exit ramp system to SR 56 10 p.m. Friday to 6 a.m. Saturday
  • Lane closures continue from Pond Avenue to Long Avenue/Pioneer Museum Road from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m Friday for US 301/US 98 repaving

PINELLAS COUNTY:

  • Gateway Expressway project lane closures
    • Southbound lane closures from on Interstate 275 from Fourth Street (Exit 32) to south of Gandy Boulevard (Exit 28) through Saturday from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.
    • Lane closures on I-275 northbound Exit 30 ramp to westbound SR 686 (Roosevelt Boulevard) and westbound CR 296 (118th Avenue) through Saturday from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.
    • Lane closures from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. through Saturday at U.S. 19 Frontage Roads from 110th Avenue N to 126th Avenue N, at SR 686 (Roosevelt Boulevard) from State Road 688 (Ulmerton Road) to 49th Street, at SR 686 (Roosevelt Boulevard) entrance ramp to the Bayside Bridge, at SR 686 (Roosevelt Boulevard) from 28th Street to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street, at County Road 611/49th Street from 145th Avenue to Bayside Bridge, and at 118th Avenue from U.S. 19 to 34th Street N.
  • Intermittent lane closures continue from SR 60 (Chestnut Street) to Mohawk Street through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. for Alt. U.S. 19 (Myrtle Avenue) repaving
  • Lane closures continue through Friday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 22nd Avenue S (southbound only) for I-275 interchange improvements
  • Nightly lane closures continue through Friday from 7:30 p.m. to 8 a.m. from U.S. 19 to 41st Street S for SR 682 (54th Avenue S) repaving

Email Dr. Delay at docdelay@tampabay.com to share your traffic concerns, questions, and pictures of roadway troubles you spot in your travels around the Tampa Bay area. Follow @AskDrDelay.


ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1. A scooter rider navigates Platt Street on Friday morning during the calm before the storm — successive weekends of downtown Gasparilla parades. Scooter companies like Jump warn users it’s a violation of their rental agreement to operate one while under the influence. [OCTAVIO JONES  |  Times]
    One company decided to pull its scooters Jan. 25 ‘out of an abundance of caution for riders and those participating in Gasparilla.’
  2. Delta Air Lines said Friday it will launch five new round-trip routes a day between Tampa and Miami starting May 4. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File) [MARK LENNIHAN  |  AP]
    Delta says the daily nonstop Miami service will create new connections for Tampa travelers to fly to Latin America and other international destinations.
  3. Tampa International Airport is building a new bike and pedestrian path that will loop around its under-construction SkyCenter office and hotel development and cell phone waiting lot. Eventually, that path is planned to connect to a network of regional biking and pedestrian trails. [Tampa International Airport]
    Tampa’s airport is the nation’s first to receive the designation from the nonprofit League of American Bicyclists. It was also the first to apply.
  4. In this photo from video, Delta Air Lines Flight 89 to Shanghai, China, dumps fuel over Los Angeles before returning to Los Angeles International Airport for an emergency landing Tuesday. Fuel dumped by the airliner making an emergency return Tuesday to the airport due to an engine problem fell onto three schools, causing minor irritation to 40 children and adults, officials said. (AP Photo/Matt Hartman) [MATT HARTMAN  |  AP]
    The fuel, described by fire officials as a vapor, caused minor skin and lung irritation to 56 children and adults but nobody was taken to the hospital.
  5. Draped against the St. Petersburg skyline on Tuesday evening on January 14, 2020, the Bella Vita is visible as it docks in Port St. Pete. The yacht is nearly 250 feet long and costs about $650,000 to charter for a week in the winter, according to broker Moran Yacht and Ship. It can accommodate 12 passengers between its six staterooms and six decks, and a staff of 22. [MARTHA ASENCIO RHINE  |  Times]
    Meet the Bella Vita, a yacht almost too luxurious to believe.
  6. Ridge Road in Pasco County currently ends at Moon Lake Road. [Tampa Bay Times]
    At a ground-breaking ceremony, officials laud a road more than 30 years in the making.
  7. Readers question who determines how long a traffic light will remain either red or green and what factors go into that decision in the latest Dr. Delay. [Tampa Bay Times]
    Who controls the timing of the lights in Tampa Bay? Dr. Delay gets some answers.
  8. Pinellas bus drivers carry tips on spotting signs of human trafficking under a new program called, "We are the Eyes Of The City." Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority buses also carry the anti-trafficking message, "See something, say something." [SCOTT KEELER  |  TAMPA BAY TIMES]
    ‘Eyes on the city’ now include nearly 400 operators with the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority.
  9. This rendering from the Florida Department of Transportation shows the eight foot tall steel netting that will be added to the Sunshine Skyway later this year to deter suicidal people from jumping from the iconic span. [Florida Department of Transportation]
    The 8-foot-tall steel netting will run along about a mile and a half of the iconic span that for decades has been a magnet for people seeking to take their own lives.
  10. A 33-year-old Brandon woman died on Jan. 7, 2020 after crashing this 2001 Chevy pickup into the back of a box truck on Interstate south of Bruce B. Downs Boulevard, according to the Florida Highway Patrol. [Florida Highway Patrol]
    A woman was killed in a crash after her speeding Chevy pickup ran into the back of a box truck.
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