Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Red Bank Traffic Cams: Safety or Greed?

Yesterday, Joe brought together some stories from around the country about the use of traffic cameras, and later found a discussion of the same over on Knoxviews, with quite the cascade of comments. The next time you're at one of those traffic cameras in Red Bank (and has East Ridge put up theirs yet?), you'll have something to do: count to see how many seconds the light stays yellow.
A Texas Transportation Institute study found that an extra second of yellow time added to the current ITE formula yields a a 53 percent reduction in the number of tickets issued along with a 40 percent reduction in accidents.
Update: interestingly, an article about the Red Bank Traffic Cams appeared in today's chattanoogan.com. Debbie Renfro, administrative assistant to the Red Bank Police Department, claims that safety is their goal:
The goal of the program is to control accidents and improve safety, she said.
But Red Bank was vague regarding how much they're raking in:
The program pays for itself. The cameras were installed for free. A portion of ticket revenues goes to pay for each $100,000 camera.
I'll be timing some traffic lights next time I'm in Red Bank...


daniel said...

very interesting.

sara said...

There is an interesting article tonight on the Chattanoogan.com about the cameras.

No One Argues And Wins On Red Bank Red Light Cameras, Cameras May Also Be Used For Speeding Enforcement

Sara said...

The Cameras are in the news again today:

Judge Houston Says Videos Don't Lie On Red Light Tickets

I would be interested to know how many tickets have been given since they went up and how much money has been paid in fines.

I'd also like to know if the number of accidents at those intercections has gone down since the cameras were installed.

It would also be iteresting to see if the city lengthened the yellow light at other dangerous intercections if it would actually cut down on accidents. I wonder if they have tried that?

I know some one who got a ticket. The pictures showed that they had obviously run the light. I'm not sure I have a problem with a $50 penalty for breaking the law, especially if it is helping to make the roads safer for my family.