Sorry, not a new topic, nor even a particularly hot one here, but I just saw a great report from Los Angeles on the dangers of Red Light cameras – increased rear-end collisions and significant monetary shortfalls costing the city upwards of $1m per year. It’s hard to explain why LA even continues the program until you consider the $100k+ the camera company spends in lobbying.
Here’s the link and some more info:
SoCal News Video Questioning Red-Light Cameras – Communities and states around the nation have had all kinds of different responses to the cameras. Some have banned their use, and some have implemented them, only to see the error of their ways after awhile.
Yet many communities continue to jump onto the bandwagon. Each time, the same issues of safety, fairness, and revenue arise. It is as if lawmakers don’t know the history of red-light cameras, and so they continue to repeat it, to the detriment of the motoring public.
KCET, the nation’s largest independent public television station, has aired an excellent report, “Caught On Camera,” (http://www.kcet.org/shows/socal_connected/content/politics/caught-on-camera.html#_login) for its viewers in Southern and Central California. Reporter Judy Muller provides a lucid expose of the myths and the facts surrounding red-light cameras.
The 10-minute report is must-see TV for anyone who cares about potential or existing red-light cameras in their community – A few of the video’s key points:
- The fine for right-turn-on-red tickets was tripled when the cameras went in (The fine is now close to $500!).
- Yet Los Angeles is losing money off the program ($1mm + per year!).
- Los Angeles’ own City Controller has serious doubts about the statistical benefits of the program, which are based on an insufficiently small sample; better and contradictory national studies were ignored during the decision making process.
- It is not clear why police and lawmakers favor the cameras, but the private manufacturer of the cameras, American Traffic Solutions, has wooed them with over $100K in contributions.
Take a few minutes out to watch the video, and share it with friends and family. If your community has red-light cameras or is considering them, send a link to your representative.