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Red light cameras intended to reduce car accident numbers

One key ingredient of the push to reduce traffic fatalities and injuries in New York City is the use of video cameras installed at certain red light locations. The city has about 150 red lights with cameras installed. The city makes the point that generally this technique is a factor in reducing car accident numbers.

Some drivers are complaining that the program is being implemented to obtain increased revenue through the $50 tickets and not to reduce car accidents. The imposition of legal measures through an unmarked, anonymous camera seems to cause resentment in some members of the driving public. Some drivers nabbed for tickets indicated that if the location was marked in some way, then it would be different.

That reasoning appears largely disingenuous because it tends to say that the driver will obey the traffic laws only if he or she knows and has a warning that the government is watching. It should be enough for drivers in New York to realize that some locations are equipped with cameras, and it is thus best to be careful and focused in dealing with all red lights. That is particularly true because the purpose of the cameras is to create a safer driving public and have fewer car accidents, which should be a worthy goal for all drivers to appreciate.

In any event, there are devices available that allow drivers to get advance warnings of activated red light locations. New York and other communities generally find these devices to be helpful in keeping drivers alert and more safety-conscious. The concern is that red light violations can lead to gruesome car accident scenes and severe injuries and death. Whenever someone is hurt as a result of a red light violation by a negligent driver, the victim or his or her estate will have a right to bring a claim for compensation for personal injuries or for wrongful death. That is where the services of an attorney experienced in such claims can be of substantial assistance to an innocent victim or the family of a deceased victim.

Source: The New York Times, “Red-Light Camera Debate Is a Stew of Anger, Revenue and Safety“, John R. Quain, March 12, 2015

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