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Whats your opinion on red light cameras?

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  • Whats your opinion on red light cameras?

    What is your opinion on those cameras? I've seen a couple of rear end collisions that were caused by them because people slammed there brakes when a light suddenly changed to yellow. I personally believe they are a double edged sword: in one way they are a great revenue generator, in another they can make a politician who is pro camera pretty unpopular with the local motorists. Now I want to hear what is a LEO's take on these machines.
    Life is what you make of it

  • #2
    well, if there is a rear end collision because someone slammed on their brakes, then I would have to say someone was following to close. It is BS, IMO, that slamming on your brakes should result in some one rear ending you.

    So your theory is: if a child runs out into the street and you slam on your brakes to avoid running over the child, you should expect to be rear ended.

    That is the most ridiculous argument I've ever heard off.

    Follow at a safe distance, don't run red lights and you will not have to worry about red light cameras. It seems pretty simple to me. Considering I live and work in an area that has about two dozen red light cameras and have never had a problem with them.

    I think they make a difference.

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    • #3
      In Chicago's streets, people hug each others tails like you wouldn't believe. Especially true when its rush hour and everyone is driving bumper-bumper. The rear endings is not an argument, I've actually seen it happen a couple of times and personally I extend my commute with a few detours to avoid those intersections because they are nerve racking for me even though I never gotten a red light ticket or even ran a red light. Sure I got caught in a yellow that I had no time to slow down for because the light changed when I was a foot from entering the intersection, but I never actually blew a red light nor do I intend to.
      Life is what you make of it

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      • #4
        It depends on why you are putting the cameras.

        The next town over has two intersections that had so many red light related crashes during the AM and PM rush hour that they assigned their entire motor detail to those locations just to keep the wrecks down. It took about a year for word to spread, but after putting in red light cameras, drivers began to behave themselves and the accident rate dropped dramatically. I have no problem with cameras at those locations.

        OTOH, the city council of another nearby town wanted to put red light cameras up at every intersection having signals, not because there was an accident problem, but because they wanted to generate revenue from automated citations. I have a big problem with that.
        Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

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        • #5
          The concept is good - get drivers to voluntarily comply and stop on red signals. Unfortunately, the politicians have found the perverbial cash cow and they are now used, as others have stated, to raise revenues for the towns. My city has three of them and recently decided to eliminate them due to the overall cost of maintenance and monitoring.
          Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence!

          [George Washington (1732 - 1799)]

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          • #6
            Originally posted by L-1 View Post
            It depends on why you are putting the cameras.

            The next town over has two intersections that had so many red light related crashes during the AM and PM rush hour that they assigned their entire motor detail to those locations just to keep the wrecks down. It took about a year for word to spread, but after putting in red light cameras, drivers began to behave themselves and the accident rate dropped dramatically. I have no problem with cameras at those locations.

            OTOH, the city council of another nearby town wanted to put red light cameras up at every intersection having signals, not because there was an accident problem, but because they wanted to generate revenue from automated citations. I have a big problem with that.
            Well said. If there is a serious issue with red light violations and collisions, then I have no issue with them. If they are being used simply for a money generator, that's a problem.

            I do not agree at all with the rear-end collision excuse.
            I'm 10-8 like a shark in a sea of crime..

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            • #7
              I hate when people say that red light cameras are for revenue. If you want a camera that will generate revenue then instal a camera that takes photographs or cracked windshields, expired plates, or other non-moving vioolations.

              That being said, I am not a fan. I think that an officer (human factor) needs to be involved.
              I have the heart of a child..................................No really, it is in a jar on my desk.

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              • #8
                Well, I don't like em, especially the way our local politicians "sold " the concept. That's strictly a personal opinion. Title 32 Code of Alabama(Traffic Code) requires an Officer to observe the violation, placing the violator "behind the wheel" in order for a citation to be issued. Municipalities which employ red light camera's have avoided this requirement by making the violations civil in nature, with no points being assessed against a violator's driving record. The photos are reviewed by a Police Officer prior to a citation being sent in the mail. The fine amount is $50.00 with a percentage going to the firm which maintains the camera's. I don't like that part either. Just my .02 on the issue.

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                • #9
                  In Montgomery County, MD, we have speed cameras. If they catch you going 11 over, they snap a picture and you get a nice $40 ticket in the mail.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by MD11pilot View Post
                    What is your opinion on those cameras? I've seen a couple of rear end collisions that were caused by them because people slammed there brakes when a light suddenly changed to yellow.
                    I would rather be in a rear end collision then a t-bone any day.

                    I personally believe they are a double edged sword: in one way they are a great revenue generator,
                    They are also used to get people to stop like they are supposed to.

                    in another they can make a politician who is pro camera pretty unpopular with the local motorists. Now I want to hear what is a LEO's take on these machines.
                    If the motorists don't like it, then quit running or trying to beat the lights, putting other motorists in danger.

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                    • #11
                      They are massive revinue generators.......a couple of the crooked polititcians (redundant, I know) that run LA City were wailing and gnashing their teeth last year when the cameras were not bringing in the expected $$$$$$$$......and only a few months before they had been saying how wonderful the cameras were for reducing crashes ect.......shocking.....if it really was about 'safety' then they really shouldnt care about the $$$$$, should they?

                      They should be make illegal in every state in the union......and any polititcian that advocates for them should be tarred, feathered, and ran out on a rail......

                      Traffic enforcement far too often ends up as means to make $$$$ for the various government entities in the area, rather than reducing accidents ect on the roadway. Finding a happy medium between getting the asshats off the road, and not simply using the CVC (and by extension, us) as a cash cow for the city/county/state is something that I dont think will ever happen.

                      While most folks that work traffic as their primary 'mission' honestly see themselves as saving lives ect by traffic enforcement, the polititcians do not. THEY see traffic enforcement as another way to make $$$$$$.
                      The posts on this forum by this poster are of his personal opinion, and his personal opinion alone

                      "Politicians are like diapers. They need to be changed often and for the same reason"

                      "We fight not for glory; nor for wealth; nor honor, but only and alone we fight for freedom, which no good man surrenders but with his life"

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                      • #12
                        We have one at one of our most dangerous intersection. We tried to get more, but the state would not let us put them on state roads. I doubt they have stopped any crashed, but at least they do punish the people that run the red light. They are done as a city code enforcement violation, instead of a state traffic violation with a $206 fine and 4 points on the license.

                        And it makes us a lot of money. Is it the reason for them? Probably, but to me I think it's just a plus.

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                        • #13
                          Cameras dont cause collisions....drivers cause collisions
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                          • #14
                            I have a personal moral objection to any big-brother type monitoring, including red light or speed cameras, gunshot detectors, or automated license plate readers (that constantly scan).

                            From an LE perspective, anything that increases public safety or decreases actual crime is a good thing.

                            Not sure how it is in other states, but in DE all of the images from red light cameras are reviewed by a live officer to make sure the system didn't glitch.
                            -Mike
                            The above comments reflect the personal, off-the-record, unofficial opinions of the individual posting them only, and in no way, shape, or form should be taken to indicate any particular opinion, policy, or belief by the poster's or any other agency, governmental entity, organization, or corporation. Thank you and have a nice day.

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                            • #15
                              I have a personal moral objection to any big-brother type monitoring, including red light or speed cameras, gunshot detectors, or automated license plate readers (that constantly scan).
                              Considering that driving is a privilege, not a right, I don't have much of an issue with monitoring devices that keep crashes down and morons off the road. As far as license plate readers, the tag is government issued/owned and there is absolutely no expectation of privacy. If the person wants their vehicle registered and abides by the rules of the road, they have nothing to worry about. Those tag readers catch quite a few stolen vehicles from what I have heard as well. I do not see any type of moral issue or disadvantage in having them.
                              I'm 10-8 like a shark in a sea of crime..

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