That Didn’t Take Long: Already On Tape, Road Accident Caused By China’s New Yellow Light Rule

In response to public outcry over a January 1 regulation stipulating that drivers must stop on yellow lights, traffic management authorities have promised to upgrade road signals, according to China Daily: “The pace of signal upgrading will quicken, the traffic management bureau under the Ministry of Public Security said in a statement on Thursday.”

But it’s already too late, if you choose to believe the maker of the embedded video. Taken yesterday in Beijing at Fangzhuang South Road, Youku user 林宝塔夫 claims this five-car fender bender was the result of a driver slamming on the brakes after the green light changed.

To think, it was just yesterday that I wrote, “Let’s see how long until the first rear-end accident caused by a car braking suddenly at yellow.”

We likely haven’t seen the end of these rear-end collisions. China Daily again:

Jiang Mingsheng, a taxi driver in Beijing who has 33 years’ driving experience, said the regulations have put him under pressure when he drives past road crossings, as many traffic lights in Beijing do not have countdown timers.

“I ran a yellow light the other day. I was meters away from the stop line and the lights suddenly turned yellow. I was almost in the middle of the road after I put my brakes on and stopped the vehicle,” he said.

“I don’t think anyone would be able to stop the vehicle in that case,” he said.

State media introduced this new law by airing a compilation of accidents caused by drivers speeding through intersections. How soon before we’re treated to a compilation of accidents caused by braking?

    11 Responses to “That Didn’t Take Long: Already On Tape, Road Accident Caused By China’s New Yellow Light Rule”

    1. KopyKatKiller

      I would blame this on the drivers, not on the light. Tailgating is illegal, right? If they were obeying the rules, there would have been room to stop. This is just another example of the problem Chinese have with the relatively simple task of driving.

      • KopyKatRetard

        It has nothing to do with tailgating this law is retarded and you’re retarded probably because you’ve been in China too long. There’s a significant amount of delay between hitting the brakes and the following driver reacting. Did you even read what the driver said? What would you do if you’re meters away from the intersection at 30 mph and it turns yellow?

        • KopyKatKiller

          “There’s a significant amount of delay between hitting the brakes and the following driver reacting.”

          Ummmmm, that’s why you are not supposed to tailgate. You are supposed to leave enough room between your car and the one in front to avoid colliding, At 30mph there should be at least 3 or 4 car lengths between you and the car in front. Also, you should also be watching the lights. And as a rule, cars should also be slowing down when they approach any intersection and be prepared to stop.

          I highly doubt any of these safety precautions were being taken by the people doing the rear-ending as they are Chinese drivers who accelerate at intersections and tailgate like motherfuckers. Serves them right if they crash.

          PS. For Chinese readers out there, here’s some helpful information I’m sure you’ve never seen before…

    2. fdawei David

      The newly enacted law is asinine. If one checks the laws physics, once a vehicle is in motion it is nearly impossible to “stop on a dime,” as this law mandates.
      I was in a number of taxis today, all drivers told me to buckle up, as part of the new law, but they groused about the new yellow light law that compels them to suddenly stop as the light turns yellow.
      In fact, while we were discussing this dangerous practice, Audis Benzs and Lexus continued to do what they always do, run the yellow lights, pretending the law doesn’t apply to them, despite the presence of police officers at the intersections who ignored their complete disregard of the law.
      Lets prepare ourselves for accidents that are waiting to happen and let’s wait for the insurance companies to rant and rave about the sheer volume of accidents to pedestrians and vehicles alike.

    3. snoopfrog

      A couple comments…
      Now i have lived in shanghai for a while having moved from beijing, but one thing i am still pretty sure of: the worst drivers in china are bus, taxi and wujing drivers. Not anyone driving a specific brand and for full disclosure i drive a german car and its not a vw.

      Secondly, most traffic lights have a countdown

      Third however given a lot of people never cared abt that and sped through yellow lights then they already shoukd have the practice of stopping when yellow changed to red.

      Lastly, certainly the city where this should lead to the least issue is beijing… hard to crash when traffic is still. So taxi drivers are worried about fines and nothing else. The sad thing is this regulation does nothing to stop traffic. Now if people got fined for being stuck in the middle of an intersection then this would have been more positive.

      • Wheel Nut

        Disclosure: You are a cashed up expat. If you want to say you have the money to drive a Benz, BMW, Audi, or Porsche then do so. No need to beat around the bush by saying “It’s German, just not a VW”. There is no shame in having done well enough to afford a nice car.

    4. narsfweasels

      Shanghai was reporting a decrease in traffic accidents as of the last few days. I actually don’t see the problem with this law, as Kat said, people fail to leave enough space between cars and that causes more problems than lights changing.

      Seriously: I drive every day here and I have certainly noticed a much more cautious attitude to driving from other road users. There’s less of a race when the ligh turns yellow. Genuinely feeling this is a good thing.

      Now, can we do something about the bicycles, mopeds, tricycles and motorbikes?


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