Red Light Cameras
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  1. #1
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    Red Light Cameras

    It looks like Virginia is shutting down the last of its red light cameras because they didn't renew the law.

    What's the general consensus regarding using automated cameras to enforce traffic law? How about CCTV like in Great Britan? I'm a libertarian, that should be a clear indicator of how I feel about it.

    Anyone here support them? If so, to what extent?

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by KenB
    It looks like Virginia is shutting down the last of its red light cameras because they didn't renew the law.

    What's the general consensus regarding using automated cameras to enforce traffic law? How about CCTV like in Great Britan? I'm a libertarian, that should be a clear indicator of how I feel about it.

    Anyone here support them? If so, to what extent?
    Mixed feelings- they are just starting them here after changing the law (since there is no officer to witness).

    A teammate on his bike was T-boned earlier this year by a red-runner (light had just changed). Somehow he was relatively unscathed. Not a day goes by on my bike that I don't witness someone running a late light.

    The fact of the matter is an intersection is probably the most dangerous place/most common spot for an accident, and probably makes the least sense to be accelerating through there to catch a "stale" light.

    I'm the last person to obey the letter of the law when it comes to traffic- and I'd be furious if they handled speeding in the same manner. I also don't like how these automated ticket generators are viewed as revenue creators (they actually contract with a company who gets a cut from the fines, so the city incurs no cost to buy the systems)- and that just seems wrong out of principle. It rather taints the process... as if it isn't for public safety anymore. But overall, I don't run reds... so I don't really care.

    What I don't like is how the owner of the vehicle is responsible for the $140 fine- rather than the driver.

  3. #3
    Quiet, daddy's drinking
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    They don't work.

    Red light cameras actually lead to an increase in accidents. Now instead of cars running the lights they instead jam on the brakes in order to stop at the yellow for fear of getting a ticket. This in turn leads to more rear end collisions. The studies have shown that the safest option is to make the yellow lights longer and give a few seconds where the lights are red both ways before the green comes on. The cameras are only for revenue enhancement. The camera company puts them in for free and splits the take with the city.
    Just because you won't listen to reason does not mean I have to listen to idiocy.

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  4. #4
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    [QUOTE=Turtleherder]Red light cameras actually lead to an increase in accidents./QUOTE]

    That's the most absurd thing I've heard in a long time! If you get in an accident because someone jammed on their brakes, you're going too fast or you're too close.

    I object to red light cameras or any other kind of camera because it violates the fundamental right of innocent until proven guilty. I get a notice in the mail that says I have to prove that I am not guilty rather than the state or city proving that I am.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by mohair_chair
    I object to red light cameras or any other kind of camera because it violates the fundamental right of innocent until proven guilty. I get a notice in the mail that says I have to prove that I am not guilty rather than the state or city proving that I am.
    FWIW-

    Here in (urban) Nebraska, people violate the law left/right/ & center. @ almost every intersection I stop @-no turn signal, several red runners, and people stopping right in the middle of the crosswalk (and blocking the ramps on the sidewalks). This is why I try to stay on bike paths...
    and yes-here they do have red cameras @ the more busy intersections. So many violations, and not a cop 2b seen.
    "Refreshingly Unconcerned With The Vulgar Exigencies Of Veracity "

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Turtleherder
    The studies have shown that the safest option is to make the yellow lights longer and give a few seconds where the lights are red both ways before the green comes on.
    I've read studies that show that drivers just adjust accordingly to the longer lights and the red/red setups- and even more cars squeeze through the intersections.

    Maybe we need more roundabouts with no lights?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by filtersweep
    I've read studies that show that drivers just adjust accordingly to the longer lights and the red/red setups- and even more cars squeeze through the intersections.

    Maybe we need more roundabouts with no lights?
    howabout better mass transit? Increasing traffic capacity-leads to worse traffic jams, and more red-runners methinks.
    "Refreshingly Unconcerned With The Vulgar Exigencies Of Veracity "

  8. #8
    Seeking shades of grey
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    Since I doubt that we will be able to convert most of the intersections to roundabouts, which have 33% less accidents and 90% less fatal accidents, I've resigned myself to accept technology as a solution to enforcement. I think the cameras are generally a good idea, as we all know it is pretty unsafe to run red lights. Paying police to babysit intersections seems a waste of money too.

  9. #9
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    well out here in San Diego

    the Mfr's were getting a cut of the ticket fines. funny thing is the mfr set insanely short yellows to increase their cut. so now they've been banned, they are trying to reinstate them but only if it is a 'not for profit' venture
    one nation, under surveillance with liberty and justice for few

    still not figgering on biggering

  10. #10
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    Wink I'm all for them

    I'm sure that it will cut down on the number of people who use the "three second rule." Same for cameras on every street corner. We need to watch out for "evil-doers" and spitters on sidewalks. Lastly, cameras in the bedrooms will cut down on illegal sex.
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  11. #11
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    Double whammy

    Going home from work one night I had to take the main road instead of the freeway, at 4am in the morning. I got flashed at a set of lights that were not even turned on. Why? Because the freakin' thing doubles as a speed camera. I was doing 56km/h in 50km/h zone.

    Only cost me 40 francs (about 30 dollars).
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by KenB
    It looks like Virginia is shutting down the last of its red light cameras because they didn't renew the law.

    What's the general consensus regarding using automated cameras to enforce traffic law? How about CCTV like in Great Britan? I'm a libertarian, that should be a clear indicator of how I feel about it.

    Anyone here support them? If so, to what extent?
    I don't like them, but I also don't like watching cars go through red lights. Just today I was waiting to turn left and the light turned red, but two cars decided it was more important that they run the red light instead of the safety of the people in the intersection.

    Until we learn a little patience, the red light cameras might just be a necessary evil.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by spyderman
    I don't like them, but I also don't like watching cars go through red lights. Just today I was waiting to turn left and the light turned red, but two cars decided it was more important that they run the red light instead of the safety of the people in the intersection.

    Until we learn a little patience, the red light cameras might just be a necessary evil.
    The last information that I saw about the effect of the cameras on people running red lights was that the same number of people ran the lights after the cameras were installed as before. I believe the revenue has gone way up.
    Mike

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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeBiker
    The last information that I saw about the effect of the cameras on people running red lights was that the same number of people ran the lights after the cameras were installed as before. I believe the revenue has gone way up.
    It certainly might help save a few lives if the ones who got ticketed thought twice the next time. Plus, it might also help keep my property taxes down too. I've heard some people beat the rap by challenging the "calibration records."

    What's the alternative?

  15. #15
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    They are installed at one of the intersections I have to ride through each morning. Traffic turning right onto the main road have an acceleration lane, but the sign says no turn on red except in the far right lane after coming to a complete stop. People run the light constantly because of the acceleration lane. When I ride on the shoulder of the main road, I have to cross the acceleration lane and have had many close calls. People just don't look. Before you ask, the bike lane markings direct me through the acceleration lane. Since installing the cameras, most people stop and look both ways. It makes me feel safer on my commute, but in an Orwellian way.

  16. #16
    Call me a Fred
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    Quote Originally Posted by spyderman
    It certainly might help save a few lives if the ones who got ticketed thought twice the next time. Plus, it might also help keep my property taxes down too. I've heard some people beat the rap by challenging the "calibration records."

    What's the alternative?
    Better driver's training. I haven't been trained or tested for over 40 years. When I was a pilot, I was constantly required to pass tests and take training.

    I also support raising the minimum driving age to at least 18 (with restrictions). Too many people die because we treat having a driver'e license as a right.
    Mike

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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeBiker
    Better driver's training. I haven't been trained or tested for over 40 years. When I was a pilot, I was constantly required to pass tests and take training.

    I also support raising the minimum driving age to at least 18 (with restrictions). Too many people die because we treat having a driver'e license as a right.
    Driver retraining/testing does happen when you reach a certain age in most states. Training will not stop people from running red lights, either death or fines will.

    How high were you rated?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by KenB
    Anyone here support them? If so, to what extent?
    Cameras are a loser. Instead, I think we should install those "severe tire damage" spikes at dangerous intersections. As soon as the light turns red, the spikes flip up.
    Pro rep, yo!

  19. #19
    Palm trees & sunshine!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gripped
    Cameras are a loser. Instead, I think we should install those "severe tire damage" spikes at dangerous intersections. As soon as the light turns red, the spikes flip up.
    Actually, I was watching one of those "World's Worst Drivers" shows once and they had a driving instructor in Great Britain who said that seat belts and airbags have been the worst things to happen to automobile safety in that they encourage people to drive faster and take more risks because the danger of being seriously injured is so reduced. He suggested that, instead of seat belts and airbags, a 12" spike be placed in the center of the steering wheel.

    I have to agree that it would definitely change some driving habits.

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