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Thread: More Unconstitutional Cameras
05-05-07, 08:31 AM #1
More Unconstitutional Cameras
City adds 6 red-light cameras
May 5, 2007
BY FRAN SPIELMAN City Hall Reporter
Six more accident-prone Chicago intersections have been chosen to expand the Brave New World of traffic enforcement: red-light cameras that have raked in $37 million and reduced red-light running.
Cameras will be activated Monday at: 79th and Western; a triple intersection that includes 79th, Cottage Grove and Stony Island Avenue; 79th and South Chicago; Chicago and Western; 51st and South Western Boulevard, and Belmont and Austin.
Once again, intersections were chosen from a list of the city's 100 most accident-prone intersections with an emphasis on those with a history of "right angle" crashes typically caused by red-light running.
The new locations bring to 39 the number of intersections covered by red-light cameras.
"Drivers who recklessly run red lights risk their own lives, the lives of their passengers and the lives of the motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians with whom they share the road," James Argiropolous, acting executive director of the city's Office of Emergency Management and Communications, said in a press release.
"These cameras have proven themselves effective in reducing this type of unsafe behavior, which is the only goal of this program."
Since red-light cameras were first installed in November 2003, they've turned into a major money-maker for City Hall. Last year alone, the cameras generated 304,011 tickets at $90 a pop for a grand total of $19.8 million. That's up from 176,446 tickets and $12.7 million the year before.
Even more encouraging than the revenue is how the threat of being caught on camera has modified drivers' behavior.
Accidents have declined by 23 percent at the first 10 intersections. Red-light running at all 33 intersections is down 55 percent, officials said.
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05-05-07, 08:48 AM #2
Why is this unconstitutional but the paparazzi are not?
We are the thin blue line
and all the money in the world.
And no you can't have any.
05-05-07, 02:47 PM #3
Personally , i like the idea of the cameras at intersections , fender benders are a headache ,they tie up traffic and patrol cars so if this is a big decrease than why should it be unconstitutional ?
Good question Piggybank Cop
05-05-07, 03:22 PM #4
You guys remember the little-known amendment to the Constitution that reads:
No Governing power of the State shall utilize any measure which hinders any person from driving like a madman when law enforcement personnel are not present in the immediate vicinty.
"The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money."
- Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America
Tell me not, Sweet, I am unkind,
That from the nunnery
Of thy chaste breast and quiet mind
To war and arms I fly. - Lovelace
The opinions expressed by this poster are wholly his own, and should never be construed to even remotely be in representation of his employer, its agencies or assigns. In fact, they probably fail to be in alignment with the opinions of any rational human being.
05-05-07, 05:28 PM #5
lol County , good one ....
05-05-07, 09:03 PM #6"I'm not a coward,
I've just never been tested
I'd like to think that if I was,
I would pass"
~Mighty Mighty Bosstones~
05-05-07, 09:16 PM #7Banned
- Join Date
- Rep Power
There are success stories to be sure. The downsides are many though, and worse, somehow safety was superseded by enforcement and revenue. Longer yellows result in fewer violations and fewer accidents. Shorter yellows result in more of both - and this is a critical flaw in a system with a direct profit motive.
Texas: Short Yellows Slow Down Red Light Cameras
On Thursday, the Lubbock, Texas city council voted to delay installation of red light cameras after a local television station exposed the city's short timing of yellow lights at eight of the twelve intersections where the devices were to be installed.
Short yellows assure a steady flow of red light camera ticket revenue. 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.
January 14, 2002 - "The most significant change in the number of violations occurred at the intersection of Mission Bay Drive and Grand (1541) where the yellow change interval was extended from 3.1 seconds to 4.7 seconds. This change resulted in an 88-percent decrease in the number of violations. At the five other intersections, the number of violations dropped significantly in response to longer yellow times." ["City of San Diego Enforcement System Review Final Report", PB Farradyne Inc., January 14, 2002, Chapter 6 (Traffic Engineering and Traffic Operations Improvements", page 78]
These articles may be found at
A 2005 Virginia DOT study found:
"The cameras are correlated with an increase in total crashes of 8% to 17%."
In 2005, The Washington Post found:
"The analysis shows that the number of crashes at locations with cameras more than doubled, from 365 collisions in 1998 to 755 last year. Injury and fatal crashes climbed 81 percent, from 144 such wrecks to 262. Broadside crashes, also known as right-angle or T-bone collisions, rose 30 percent, from 81 to 106 during that time frame."
A 2004 North Carolina A&T University study found:
"Our findings are more pessimistic, finding no change in angle accidents and large increases in rear-end crashes and many other types of crashes relative to other intersections."
A 2003 Ontario Ministry of Transportation study found:
"Compared to the average number of reported collisions occurring in the before period, the average yearly number of reported collisions increased 15.1 per cent in the after period."
A 1995 Australian Road Research Board study found:
"The results of this study suggest that the installation of the RLC at these sites did not provide any reduction in accidents, rather there has been increases in rear end and adjacent approaches accidents on a before and after basis and also by comparison with the changes in accidents at intersection signals."
A 2004 Texas Transportation Institute study found:
"An increase in yellow duration of 1.0 seconds is associated with a [crash frequency] of about 0.6, which corresponds to a 40 percent reduction in crashes."
A 2001 report by the Majority Leader of the U.S. House of Representatives found:
"The changes in the yellow signal timing regulations have resulted in the inadequate yellow times. And these inadequate yellow times are the likely cause of almost 80 percent of red light entries."
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