Irony: Red light cameras a safety impediment

Red light cameras are nothing more than a surreptitious tax. Oh sure, they're sold to municipalities as a safety benefit, but what else would you say if you wanted to be paid to install, administrate, and monitor your little ticket-writing bots? The cities and towns that put the cameras greedily snap up the extra revenue generated by dangerously short yellow lights and overzealous cameras. Patrick Bedard has been poking holes in the theory that traffic cameras are the salve for behind the wheel idiocy, and a recent study by the University of South Florida Public Health agrees that the cameras actually cause accidents. Other studies also back up the findings that drivers are quicker to slam on their brakes at yellow lights when they spot the cameras. While it should not play out with a rear ending, nobody maintains a safe following distance, or even pays attention. In some cases, the rate of red light running is low enough that the cameras cause a spike in incidents, proving that the cure can sometimes be worse than the sickness.

[Source: Kicking Tires, Photo: Morning Chu Hi]

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