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Study Finds Red Light Cameras Save Lives + Red Lights Not Optional in Orlando

New Study Finds Red Light Cameras Save Children’s Lives

Motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death among children in the United States.

Washington Post recently reported that the American Academy of Pediatrics released a study suggesting that red-light cameras save children’s lives. This study was presented at their national conference in October.  It highlighted how widely pediatric crash-related deaths vary from state to state, with weak red-light-camera enforcement laws and weak child-restraint use playing a role.

 

Red Light Cameras and the City of Orlando

Here’s some advice if you are thinking of running a red light in Orlando: Don’t.

So says Mike Rhodes, who is in charge of Orlando Stops, which has posted cameras at 17 intersections throughout the city to snap pictures and videos of vehicles that continue going even though the traffic light has turned red.

As many 27 more intersections may get cameras during the next half year or so, Rhodes said. They are being placed throughout the city where accidents are most common, he said.

Since the program was introduced in 2008, right-angle collisions at monitored intersections have dropped 65 percent, according to city statistics. And the number of red-light runners has dropped by more than a quarter at intersections with cameras.

The city has issued more than 155,000 tickets to red-light runners since 2011 and is one of nearly 70 agencies statewide involved in the surveillance program. The fine is $156, with almost half of the proceeds going to the state.

Screenshot 2016-09-06 14.58.30Attorneys have sued red-light camera programs all over the state in recent years, arguing they are invasive and unconstitutional. The city’s operation has been largely unaffected, Rhodes said.

“People want technology in so many aspects of their lives, but not in this,” he said.

Some cities have bowed to pressure and gotten rid of the cameras.

That’s a mistake, says research by the Institute for Highway Safety. Doing away with cameras, the institute says, results in fatalities related to red-light violations jumping by 30 percent.

“We know we have a problem: people dying at signalized intersections because of people running red lights,” IIHS President Adrian Lund said in a release.  “We know red light cameras are part of the solution.”

The agency found 709 people died in 2014 because of red-light-running crashes. An estimated 126,000 people were injured, too. Most of the ones who died were riding in other vehicles, passengers in the red-light-running vehicles, pedestrians or bicyclists.unnamed-1

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