More Reasons to Put the Brakes on Red Light Cameras
This post is part of my ongoing series on my opposition to red light cameras. I have written articles on the subject (see here and here) and blogged on it (here and here and here and here and here and here) many times.
It seems, of late, every time red light cameras appear in the news, more is revealed that makes them a terrible idea and, true to form, two more reports have appeared in the last week or so which continue to indict red light cameras as bad public policy.
The first report is out of Chicago which you can see here. As predicted here, reports now confirm that tickets can be issued if the time duration of yellow caution lights is shorter than the three seconds required by law by as little as .1 seconds. You may not think .1 seconds is very significant, but, as it turns out, shaving off that little bit of time, allowing for only 2.9 seconds for a yellow caution light, led to 77,000 more red light tickets and an additional $8,000,000 more to government coffers.
The second report regards a judge presiding over a case dealing with red light cameras in Miami who has declared the red light program there illegal as it is currently enforced. You can read more about that case here. Under the law applicable in Miami, a private company is empowered to take and examine the red light camera photographs to discern whether a violation occurred. If this private company believes a violation occurred it then issues the driver a citation. The judge in this case ruled that only government entities are empowered to issue citations, not private companies. As an aside, the fact that a private company is conducting so many government functions, to me, smacks of clear political patronage, which is yet another reason to oppose the red light programs.
Finally, as noted above, I have written on this subject many times. I am starting to run out of puns and plays on words to title these posts. So, if you have any suggestions for the titles of future pieces, leave a comment and let me know!