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Thursday, March 20, 2008 

Red-light Cameras Cause More Accidents

Researchers have found that red-light cameras are causing higher levels of vehicle accidents. Detailed studies indicate that the increase in accidents occurs as drivers slam on their brakes at camera controlled intersections to avoid tickets thereby causing chain reaction crashes from behind.

-The Star

Panic stops and rear-enders are a costly and frustrating problem.

In Toronto we have red light cameras and we also have a 3- second delay between the red light on one axis and the green light on the other axis.

That allows motorists the chance to make it through before traffic in the other axis begins to move.

In my limited experience, there doesn't seem to be mid-intersection accidents and I've not seen a multi-car pile-up at a traffic light in ages. But that's because I'm mainly downtown and perhaps suburbia is different.

Still, the three-second delay must be contributing something.

Call me a cynic - but I believe the installation of cameras was intended to boost revenue for municipal coffers. If city halls really cared about accident prevention, they would adjust the time delay between red light / green light to 5 seconds.

Many sites on the net claim the cameras are mostly for the benefit of Lockheed Martin. They require that amber lights be shortened, or the city takes a smaller cut of the ticket revenue.

If the cameras were for safety, they could do the same thing by posting police at intersections every few months, and giving out tickets to deter drivers passing by that route every day. They can also increase the delay between red and green on perpendicular streets, and the time of amber lights.

Leftdog, did you get my email the other day?

Yes .. check yours for reply ;)

check out my blogsite at www.hammertimegp.blogspot.com

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