10 Reasons to Keep Red Light Cameras

Los Angeles - LOS ANGELES - As the Los Angeles City Council prepares to vote this week on the future of the city's critical traffic safety camera program, the Traffic Safety Coalition is outlining 10 reasons why the program should stay:
  1. ZERO Crash Fatalities: Following safety camera installation, the Los Angeles Police Department crash reports, between 2002 and 2009 since the Photo Red Light Camera program began, NO fatal crashes have occurred at any of the camera enforced intersection approaches.
  2. Safety cameras have worked to make Los Angeles streets safer. There has been a 62 percent decrease in red light related traffic collisions at the 32 intersections where the cameras are installed, with no significant increase in rear end collisions.
  3. Safety cameras change driving behavior city wide. In Los Angeles there was a 22% reduction in crashes citywide after deployment.
  4. Deadly consequences of dangerous driving in California. 3,000 people are killed in the California roadways every year (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration).
  5. Red light running kills. 66 percent of all people killed at intersection crashes are victims of red light runners. The victims are innocent drivers, passengers, pedestrians and bicyclists. (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 2011).
  6. Red light running increased in Houston when cameras went dark. After intersection safety cameras were turned off in Houston, police cited injury crashes were up 350 percent after deactivation and one Houston intersection saw a 1,300% increase in crashes following camera deactivation. (“Exclusive: Accidents way up with red light cameras off.” KTRK ABC 13 Houston, 8-June-2011)
  7. Speeding and red light running increased in Albuquerque when cameras were removed. Red light running and speeding increased by 584 percent after intersection safety cameras were turned off at three Albuquerque intersections just five months ago (“Scary stats with red light cameras off,” KRQE News 7, 5/27/11).
  8. Speeding increased in Scottsdale when cameras were turned off. When speed safety cameras were turned off on Scottsdale's State Loop 101, the number of drivers speeding increased 1,024 percent (Washington et al., "Evaluation of the City of Scottsdale Loop 101 Photo Enforcement Demonstration Program, Arizona State University." Nov 2007).
  9. Safety cameras reduce fatal crashes nationwide. A 2011 report from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety concluded traffic safety cameras at the 14 largest U.S. cities using them reduced fatal red light running crashes by 24 percent (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 2011).
  10. Simply put, safety cameras reduce red light running and speeding, change driver behavior and save lives.
"It's a sad reality that when drivers are not held accountable for their actions, speeding and red light running increases dramatically as they ignore our traffic safety laws, putting everyone in danger," said Traffic Safety Coalition co-chairs Paul and Sue Oberhauser. “Cities should be taking advantage of red light cameras and every other technology available to ensure these laws are followed and enforced.”

About the Traffic Safety Coalition:
The Traffic Safety Coalition is a not-for-profit, grassroots organization comprised of concerned citizens, traffic safety experts, law enforcement, public officials, victim's advocates, health care professionals, and industry leaders who are committed to working together to make our roads safer for drivers, passengers, and pedestrians. We work with our partners throughout the country to promote technology and education that save lives and keep our roads safe. For more information, visit www.trafficsafetycoalition.com.