Topic: Traffic Enforcement Cameras
Enforcement cameras are coming to town, and it’s time we stand up and say, NO!
In our society an innocent person does not have to fear the intrusion of government into their lives. They won’t be followed by dark men with dark intentions unless of course they commit a crime. Automated enforcement cameras will change our free society to one where everyone is constantly watched, a potential criminal.
We all feel a guilty pleasure when we see someone who proceeds through a signaled intersection while we stop, getting pulled over for a ticket. There is even a term for it… Schadenfreude: Happiness at the misfortune of others. While it might feel good, these cameras come at a cost: your money, your civil rights, and your civil liberties.
The first cameras have not yet been installed, however, city officials hungry for easy revenue have announced that they already plan to expand their camera programs. They have already authorized red-light cameras, and are now considering installing mobile and fixed speed cameras, and stop sign cameras. These cameras don’t stop accidents; they simply allow the city to profit from technical violations the vast majority of which, do not result in accidents. The sad thing is these cameras have a rather nasty side affect, they increase accidents, damage, injuries, and fatalities. Don’t take my word for it, go and read the studies for yourself! «Read the rest of this article»
In February 2006, the City of Gallatin unveiled the Automated Camera Enforcement System. The system, known as A.C.E.S., is designed to catch drivers running red lights at intersections. Rather than relying on police officers to perform this function, the cameras automatically trigger when a driver enters an intersection after the light turns red. A police officer then reviews the tape, prints off a citation, and mails it to the owner of the vehicle that ran the light.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Gallatin is not alone. At least nine other communities in Tennessee, including Knoxville, Chattanooga, Germantown, Murfreesboro, and Jackson currently operate these devices.1 Other Tennessee communities considering their use include Clarksville, Morristown, Cookeville, La Follette, and Oak Ridge. Additionally, Chattanooga, Jackson, Mount Carmel, Red Bank, and Selmer have begun using speed cameras, similar devices used to capture speeding motorists.2 «Read the rest of this article»
Clarksville wants to install red-light cameras at four to six Clarksville intersections in what is basically a dangerous revenue generating scheme. These cameras result in more accidents not less. The damage rear end accidents cause often costs more to repair. There is also an increased likelihood of injuries and even death to those who are involved in these red-light camera triggered rear-end accidents. Let’s not even talk about the fact that city-wide insurance rates will likely end up going through the roof even if you never get one of these tickets.
The company our city is currently favoring is Redflex, an Australian company. They have been the vendor in charge of the City of Knoxville’s red-light camera system that is until August 1st. Redflex missed a filing deadline to renew their contract. Reflex lays the blame for the missed deadline on the Federal Express package courier company.
The City of Knoxville has had mixed results with their experience with Redflex and could have opted to allow Redflex to file their bid late but chose specifically not to do so. This is a clear indication of their dissatisfaction with the company.
Clarksville frequently holds the city of Knoxville as an example the city of Clarksville should aspire to. So perhaps we should delay awarding a red-light camera enforcement contract to a company that they are in the process of dumping. «Read the rest of this article»
“Revenue seems to be driving the red light camera rage,” said Eric Skrum, Communications Director for the National Motorists Association. “If cities were truly concerned about intersection safety, their engineers would be applying sound engineering practices that improve compliance with traffic laws and traffic signals while reducing accidents rather than installing ticket cameras.
I find it very revealing that Lockheed Martin, one of the biggest manufacturers of red light cameras in the U.S., has included clauses in their contracts that prohibit city engineers from applying engineering practices that improve compliance and reduce accidents, apparently to maintain the flow of ticket camera revenue. Lockheed Martin specifically prohibits cities, such as San Diego, California, from changing the timing of yellow lights in intersections that host their cameras, even though increasing the yellow light time has proven to dramatically decrease red light violations. «Read the rest of this article»
Clarksville wants to install red-light cameras at up to four Clarksville intersections in what is basically a dangerous revenue generating scheme. These cameras result in more accidents not less. The damage rear end accidents cause costs more to repair. There is also an increased likelihood of injuries and even death to those who are involved in the rear-end accidents. Let’s not even talk about the fact that insurance rates will likely end up going through the roof even if you never get one of these tickets.
Lets take a look at other risks these cameras subject you to. Remember, under these “civil violations” the city’s standard of evidence is much lower that in a criminal case, and you are basically presumed guilty, unless you can prove yourself innocent. «Read the rest of this article»
Clarksville wants to install red-light cameras at up to 4 Clarksville intersections in what is basically a dangerous revenue generating scheme. These cameras result in more accidents not less. The damage rear end accidents cause costs more to repair. There is also an increased likelihood of injuries and even death to those who are involved in the rear-end accidents. Let’s not even talk about the fact that insurance rates will likely end up going through the roof even if you never get one of these tickets.
I hereby challenge our city to fix our broken intersections, and not to profit off a problem the city has created intentionally or otherwise!
The city insists their goal is road safety and not revenue, so I am sure they would not mind putitng their money where their mouth is. «Read the rest of this article»
Red light cameras in the city of Aurora, Colorado, failed to yield any reduction in the overall number of accidents since the devices were installed in May 2005. Nonetheless, city officials have approved a measure that will allow the expansion of the existing four-intersection setup to one covering up to twenty-five city locations.
The devices were successful between 2006 and 2007 in issuing 19,087 tickets worth $1,431,525. “We think there’s a value to taking the program to the next step,” Police Chief Daniel Oates told the Rocky Mountain News newspaper.
However, at three of the four ticketing locations, rear end collisions increased dramatically from 2005 to 2006. At Mississippi Avenue and Potomac, rear end collisions jumped 175 percent. At Alameda Avenue and Abilene Street, the increase was 100 percent. «Read the rest of this article»
Red-light and speed enforcement cameras greatly increase the number of accidents.
Red-light Cameras cause an increase in rear-end & t-bone crashes. They also don’t stop people from running red-lights. “The most serious violations, those occurring more than 5 seconds into the red phase, did not drop in the three year period after the program began issuing tickets.”
Arkansas, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, Texas, Utah and West Virginia have enacted laws banning speed cameras. Two other states dropped their use of speed cameras after they generated intense public outcry. If traffic enforcement cameras were such a good thing, would they do that?
Lets take a look at some scientific studies for a possible explanation: «Read the rest of this article»
Clarksville, TN is considering installing red light cameras in its intersections. This is something which should be vehemently opposed by the public! While no doubt they will tout the safety benefits, it is more likely about the money they stand to gain.
Is this really as serious of a problem as they make it out to be, serious enough to warrant the public accepting the intrusion of traffic enforcement cameras into their daily lives? During the last year in the entire city of Clarksville there were 1,470 accidents at intersections throughout the city, there were an additional 1,274 citations issued for either running a red light or stop sign. There are over 85 intersections in Clarksville which have traffic signals. The entire city averages averages approximately 4 accidents at intersections per day. At Riverside Drive alone, during the last year over 39 million vehicles passed through that intersection.
Studies have shown that these red-light cameras actually increase, not decrease accidents, and that the accidents caused by people panic breaking to avoid a citations are more serious injury accidents. While most intersection accidents are property damage rather than injury.
Why is Clarksville interested in making the same mistakes? It’s about finding new ways to take your money. They will make protestations that they are doing this for safety, but studies have proven that these cameras increase accidents rather than decrease them. Indeed when spoken to by telephone City Councilman Geno Grubbs was dismissive of the safety concerns regarding these cameras. So they must have other motivations. «Read the rest of this article»
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