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Ontario Highway Traffic Act

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Red Light - Fail to Stop HTA 144(18)
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2009 11:18 am 
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I was given a ticket for failure to stop at a red light at 12:30 am. This was when it was slightly warmer, but as far as the weather was concerned, it was barely drizzling rain (it was almost a mist, but enough for me to be using my windshield wipers), and this resulted in a thin layer of moisture on the road.

The intersection that I was approaching is on an incline, so I was applying my foot to the gas pedal as I cam up towards the intersection, however I never exceeded the speed limit. The light turned yellow as I was within 30 feet of the intersection. I noticed one or 2 cars stopped at the lights on both sides of the street perpendicular to the one I was traveling on. For a split second I did start to depress the gas, but I gauged that the distance would not be sufficient based on the conditions, and did not want to risk skidding to a stop in the middle of the intersection to the peril of the oncoming drivers, so about 3/4 of my car ended up going through the red light.

As I went through the intersection, I looked to my left, and noticed a police car stopped at the light, and then predicted that I was about to be pulled over. As fate would have it, I was, and the officer proceeded to come to my car and then tell me that I had gone through what had been a "very red light". This part stuck out in my mind, because I figured that if the light had been very red, the officer's car, or the car that was next to him would have been in the intersection before I got to it, resulting in an accident that I strongly believe I avoided.

As far as photos, I will go take some, but unfortunately, my city's Commisioner of Oaths does not certify true copies, and I can't afford to hire a Notary.

I also checked online and found this website from the road safety authority of Ireland (so I doubt they'll take it seriously here):
http://www.rulesoftheroad.ie/rules-for- ... -cars.html
and see that the total stopping distance of a 35.2 meters (or 115.5 ft).
Is there any hope for me to use this argument?

Any advice on how to fight this ticket is appreciated.

Thanks all


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2009 12:09 pm 
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I also found this link to the website of the OSL (the Ontario Safety League)

http://www.osl.org/print/speed.htm

Quote:
MPH (KPH): 30 (48.3)

Metres per second: 12.5m

Perception Distance: 33' (10.1m)

Reaction Distance: 33' (10.1m)

Vehicle Braking Distance: 48' (14.63m)

Total Vehicle Stopping Distance: 114' (34.75m)



Is there any way that I can get the judge to consider this information?


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 26, 2009 6:57 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2008 8:26 pm
Posts: 2881
Location: Toronto
John Peters wrote:
For a split second I did start to depress the gas


Don't mention that in court... but...

John Peters wrote:
I never exceeded the speed limit. The light turned yellow as I was within 30 feet of the intersection. I noticed one or 2 cars stopped at the lights on both sides of the street perpendicular to the one I was traveling on...

but I gauged that the distance would not be sufficient based on the conditions, and did not want to risk skidding to a stop in the middle of the intersection to the peril of the oncoming drivers, so about 3/4 of my car ended up going through the red light.


The problem is going to be that the officer will testify that you ran the red light. If it's your word versus his, the odds of a JP finding your version more credible are pretty slim. It does happen, but it's so infrequent that I wouldn't bet anything on it. The odds of getting a reduced charge for disobeying a red light are low. While it is a 3-point offence, Prosecutors consider it to be fairly serious so they'll likely opt for a trial. BTW, where did the alleged offence take place?

If there's any good news, the law says that you must stop your vehicle on a red light prior to entering the intersection. If you were across the stop line/crosswalk/whatever when the light changed to red, you're not guilty. However, the only way to find out is to get the officer's notes via disclosure. He should have indicated where he was, that he observed the red signal, and then he saw your vehicle proceed into the intersection AFTER your signal was red. If his notes say something different (e.g. observed vehicle enter intersection then noticed light was red; or, saw vehicle enter on amber, light changed to red when vehicle was half-way thru), that's a good thing - for you. Once you have the disclosure information, you can make a decision on what to do.


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