Beaverton man suing city for ‘illegal’ yellow lights

The ticket Mats Jarlstrom's wife received at this intersection in Beaverton after a red light camera caught her going through the light, Jarlstrom said, lead him to discover the yellow light is too short, May 12, 2014. (KOIN 6)
The ticket Mats Jarlstrom's wife received at this intersection in Beaverton after a red light camera caught her going through the light, Jarlstrom said, lead him to discover the yellow light is too short, May 12, 2014. (KOIN 6)

BEAVERTON, Ore. (KOIN 6) — A Beaverton man is suing the city over its yellow lights, which he claims are illegal.

Mats Jarlstrom said the length of several yellow lights is too short and does not allow a driver who cannot stop safely get through the intersection.

He said he has been complaining to the city council for months about his concerns after his wife received a red light camera ticket at SW Allen Boulevard and SW Lombard Avenue in Beaverton.

However, Jarlstrom said the lawsuit is about public safety, stating drivers and pedestrians moving through the intersection are at risk because the light is too short.

“They claim it’s programmed to 3.5 seconds. That’s why I came out and measured. Turned out it’s much less. It goes all the way down to 3.2 seconds,” said Jarlstrom.

Jarlstrom said he will file his complaint in federal court on Tuesday with the hope that it will force the city to make yellow lights longer. Doing so, Jarlstrom said, will dramatically reduce the number of tickets issued from the red light cameras.

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