Ticket for a red light under the rain



M. Poulin was driving under the rain… In front of a changing light he continued with his impulse. He passed; the officer stopped him and gave him a ticket that got him wondered. What are the parameters to follow when you get a ticket for a red light under the rain?
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Hello, I would like to get your opinion about the ticket I got for not stopping my car at a red light.
Last autumn, I got arrested after I drove by when the light became red right before I arrived at the end of the crossroad. It was raining pretty hard on that day and the crossroad measure 42 meters and the yellow light is one for exactly 3,7 seconds. I was driving at 50km/h which is the speed limit in the area. It was impossible for me to stop in time.

Of course, I told that to the police officer, he told me that I should have reduced my speed in those kinds of conditions. I was at 20 meters of the stopping line when the light turned yellow. According to my calculations, the stopping distance when driving at 50km/h is 38 meters. So it would have been impossible for me to stop in time, or to pass the entire crossroad in time at a 50km/h speed, I still got 10 meters to drive when the light turned red. If we do the same calculation, with a lower speed, the results are even worst.Even if I plead not guilty, it is still my word against the officer’s one. Do you think the judge will appreciate my exposé on the physical and mathematical aspect of the evidence I calculated? How must I prove what I am claiming (distance, lights duration, stopping distance) in front of the judge? Thank you Pierre-Luc Poulin
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My opinion:

Of course you can propose your calculation theory and physical aspects for your defence, but you will need to call an expert at the bar to support your claiming. Furthermore, this won’t influence the fact that the climatic conditions don’t reduce the driver’s responsibility to adjust his driving. This being said, it is preferable, you be the judge, to go with a simpler approach of the impossibility to stop in those conditions that were on that day. Indeed, according to what you say, your speed was allowed and you didn’t drive dangerously.

The light became yellow when you were about to engage yourself in the crossroad. It would have been impossible for you to break and stop before the crossroad. So, it was normal to continue driving. The important factor is really the distance from the crossroad to your vehicle when the light turned yellow.

The fact that the yellow light is on only a few seconds is also very interesting and should be presented to the judge, since this explains why the police officer saw you drive on a red light. Besides, you are not contesting the fact that your vehicle still was in the crossroad when the light turned red. You are affirming that you didn’t have time to stop your car considering the distance that was between the crossroad and your car at the moment the light turned yellow.

I hope I was able to help you… Don’t forget to keep us informed of your process.


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