What is your operating system? Have you manually gone to Windows Update to ensure you have even the non-critical updates? Have you ensured you have the latest version of Quicktime?
Have you cleaned and defragmented your drive(s) in the last week? How much free, clean, freshly defragmented space is on your C drive? If you're editing off another drive, is it formatted NTFS rather than FAT32, as they come from the factory?
What type of camcorder is your original video coming from? Which settings did you select when you set up your Premiere Elements project? When you project settings match your source video precisely, you will not see red lines above the video clips on your timeline until you add effects to them. Is this the case in your situation?
If you're working with photos, have you ensured that they are all no larger than 1000x750 pixels?
Welcome to the forum.
Along with the important answers to Steve's questions, you might want to also look over this ARTICLE. It begins with a general checklist for getting PrE to run best, and then moves onto several links on how to tune up your computer and your OS. Finally, there are links to troubleshooting. I strongly recommend looking over the "Finding Clues" link, as there could well be a "breadcrumb trail," on what is causing the program to crash on you.