Drivers running red lights at West Ashley intersection

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - A viewer first tipped us off to this danger. She writes, "My family and I have learned to wait a second or two because of people running that red light. Happens every time. Don't take my word for it, see for yourself."

We caught it happening on camera several times at the intersection of Savannah Highway and Ashley Town Center Drive in West Ashley.

"It's really kind of rough. It's all two or three extra people can do to get through it after the light turns red," Frank Stevens said.

The National Campaign to Stop Red Light Running says latest statistics show more than 150,000 traffic fatalities involved red light running.

Melba Strickland says she narrowly escaped what could have been a really bad accident at the intersection.

"I was getting ready to make a left turn at that red light and somebody was going straight in the other lane was fixing to run the red light and coming from the other way was fixing to run the red light at the same time. I feel like if I hadn't of paused, I drive a pick up truck, I would have been hit from the left rear and passengers side at the same time," Strickland said.

Drivers say the avoid the area because often times it is backed up.

Charleston police say the intersection is no stranger to traffic accidents. In 2010 officers responded to 57 accidents within the area, and so far in 2011 police have responded to 30 within the area.

Drivers say others need to be considerate and follow the rules of the road.

"Read the handbook. Read the handbook and try to adhere to it. That's the best thing I can think of," Stevens said.

Live 5 asked Charleston Police if they would be doing anything to crack down on red light runners at this particular intersection, and we were told the information was passed on to the department's traffic commander.

The National Campaign to Stop Red light Running says the top reason drivers run red lights was not road rage or frustration, but being in a hurry. The campaign also says studies show red-light cameras lead to a major drop in the number of  intersection traffic violations and crashes.

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