Did you know that the average speed of a vehicle passing through a controlled intersection is about 52 mph? How many times have you approached and entered an intersection without having any idea that someone is about to run the red light?
The cure to this problem is a good amount of healthy skepticism around intersections and some specific defensive driving practices. Don't trust anyone! People run red lights all the time, so remember that a red light isn't what stops a car; only the driver's foot on the brake pedal can do that.
How many people do you see that VISIBLY aren't paying attention to their driving? Some others are off in a world of their own, thinking about everything except what they are doing with their vehicle and oblivious to everything that's going on around them.
Look "left-right-left" before you enter the intersection to make sure it is safe to cross. If you are coming to an intersection where the approaches of the side streets are hidden from view, slow down even more and exercise caution.
It is foolhardy to drive into the path of something you can't see, so don't commit yourself until you CAN see and you know it is safe.
Contributor: Ross Lewis, Safety Analyst, SEA Office