Is it Illegal to Cut Through Parking Lots to Avoid Red Lights in Massachusetts?
It seems like we're always in a hurry. We're always trying to figure out the shortest route from point A to point B. Which route will have the least traffic? What about construction? And of course those dreaded intersections we all try to avoid because we know they add an extra five minutes to our commute.
I'm basically always trying to take the shortcut, because I'm usually running late. Totally my fault, yes, but if I can shave a minute or two of my drive, I do it, within reason of course.
One of those times I was running just a few minutes behind I made the stupid move of cutting through a gas station parking lot to avoid a red light and two seconds later I had blue lights behind me. What the heck did I do, I thought? I mean, I knew it probably wasn't the nicest thing I could do, but I certainly didn't think it was something that could get me pulled over.
So what's the deal with the red-light corner cut through? Well, it's different in every state, but here in Massachusetts, it could land you in some hot water. An officer could pull you over for failure to stop at a red light, however, you could try to argue that you were planning on using the gas station (or whatever business parking lot you used to dodge the light) but then changed your mind, but pulling that funny business could have you arguing the ticket in court, and who really has time for that. An officer also could pull you over for negligent operation of a motor vehicle, depending on how fast you were driving on your shortcut.