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Red-light cameras: benefits and controversies

| Jan 30, 2020 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

Georgia residents should remember that red-light running is to blame for hundreds of deaths every year. Most people understand that this practice is wrong. While 92.9% of respondents to a survey from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety agreed that it was, however, 42.7% admitted to running a red light at least once in the previous 30 days. For many, there is only one solution to this trend: red-light cameras.

Cameras can deter drivers from running red lights and thus prevent crashes. According to data from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, cameras can reduce red-light violations by 40%. Comparing large cities with cameras to those without them, the IIHS also discovered that there were 17% fewer red-light running crash deaths in the former than in the latter.

However, there is some controversy around red-light cameras. Some cities will install camera systems and then shorten the duration of its yellow lights, the obvious reason for this being to generate more revenue through traffic tickets. Between 2012 and 2018, the number of communities with red-light camera systems fell from 533 to 421.

Communities that wish to install them must ensure public support, according to some advocates. They could do this by having an advisory committee with some of the community members involved in it and by publicizing the early stages of the program.

Running a red light is an obvious act of negligence. When red-light runners cause motor vehicle accidents, they could be deemed responsible for any resulting injuries. As for the victims themselves, they may want a lawyer to determine if they have a strong case for a personal injury claim. A successful claim could cover things like medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering.