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ATS’ Newsletter, Vol. 5, Issue 7

January 29th, 2015 Comments off

Header MediaCoverage 480

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Magistrate Keeps Red-Light Running Fines in Place
WJNO-Radio 1290 AM (Florida), Jan. 29, 2015

A West Palm Beach magistrate is refusing to throw out more than 60 red-light camera tickets, saying he will wait to see if the appeals court reverses itself or if the case goes to the Florida Supreme Court.

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Council OKs Red-Light Running Fines to Fund Spokane Safety Projects
KREM-TV CBS 2 (Washington), Jan. 26, 2015

Red-light cameras in Spokane bring in hundreds of thousands of dollars a year in fines. City leaders said all that money goes toward projects that they say make Spokane a safer place to drive. (Spokane City Council image)

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Police Cite School Bus Driver in Red-Light Running Collision
Pekin Daily Times (Illinois), Jan. 26, 2015

No one was injured Monday when a school bus, empty except for its driver, struck a Canton city garbage truck downtown during the morning’s snowfall. The driver of the bus was cited for disobeying a red light after the 11 a.m. collision. (Pekin Daily Times photo by Mike Smothers)

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Ground Broken on ATS’ New Headquarters Building
East Valley Tribune (Arizona), Jan. 25, 2015

Lincoln Property Management broke ground on the Class A office space in Mesa Riverview on Jan. 21. The development, now called Waypoint, is scheduled to move in its first tenant, the headquarters of American Traffic Solutions, along with some 500-plus jobs, in November. See related article in GlobeSt.com.

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Witnesses Tell Police Motorcyclist Ran Red-Light
The Jersey Journal (New Jersey), Jan. 23, 2015

A motorcycle rider from Vermont was severely injured in a red-light running collision in Jersey City Heights on Jan. 23. Witnesses told police the motorcyclist ran the red light. (The Jersey Journal photo by Joe Shine)

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Deadly Running of Red Light Costs Man $2,300; Driver’s License for 90 Days
Edmonton Sun (Canada), Jan. 21, 2015

An Edmonton man who caused the death of a senior when he ran a red light at an intersection and collided with the man’s car was fined $2,300. The 24-year-old man was also hit with a 90-day driving prohibition after pleading guilty in Provincial Court to a Traffic Safety Act charge of careless driving. … The court prosecutor called it a “tragic” collision and said the driver’s actions were aggravating because the light he drove through had been red for some time and the intersection is in a residential area with a high volume of traffic. (Court photo)

 

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Car-Pedestrian Collision Critically Injures 12-Year-Old
WFTV-TV Channel 9 (Florida), Jan. 29, 2015

A 12-year-old boy was struck by a car while crossing the road at an Osceola County school bus stop early Thursday morning, according to Florida Highway Patrol Troopers. The bus was preparing to stop and had its amber lights on but had not yet deployed its stop bar. (WFTV-TV Channel 9 image)

 

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ATS Partners with Radio Engineering Industries to Address School Bus Stop Arm Running
Marketwired News, Jan. 28, 2015

American Traffic Solutions has added another partner to its school bus stop arm enforcement portfolio. In addition to its current integration with AngelTrax, ATS and Radio Engineering Industries will now work together to offer a school bus stop arm camera enforcement solution. CrossingGuard, ATS’ school bus stop arm running solution has proven to be extremely effective at reducing the number of vehicles that illegally pass stopped school buses.

Car Rear-Ends School Bus Stopped for Student
Wisconsin Star, Jan. 28, 2015

A car driver was injured when he rear-ended a school bus with 45 students. Ashland County sheriff’s officials said the bus was stopped to let a student out. It had its red lights flashing when a car struck the rear of the bus and slid under it, trapping the driver. Emergency workers freed the man. The Superior Telegram has since reported the man to be in fair condition.

2 North Carolina School Systems Choose Cameras for Safety
CivitasMedia (North Carolina), Jan. 25, 2015 

For the safety of students, motorists throughout North Carolina are required to come to a stop when they see the flashing lights of a school bus. Unfortunately, some motorists fail to obey. Thanks to state funding, a new device on some of the local buses may catch drivers who break the law. Clinton City Schools and Sampson County Schools received stop arm cameras to capture drivers who pass a stopped bus.

 

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Hopeless Romantic Proposes Using Speed Camera
The Hornet (California), Jan. 28, 2015

When she told her boyfriend his wedding proposal must be “memorable,” she didn’t expect this. A hopeless romantic in Germany used a speed camera to ask his girlfriend to marry him. To avoid being penalized with points against his license, he kept his speed within 6 mph of the posted speed limit. Police even included a separate page with a blown up version of his speed camera photo. See related article in The Telegraph. (Speed camera, The Telegraph photos)

Average Speed Camera Installation Successful in U.K.
ITS International, Jan. 27, 2015

Data from the A9 route in Scotland shows that the installation of average speed camera technology is helping cut crashes. This is Europe’s longest single enforcement scheme, with the technology having been installed along a 220 km stretch of the A9 in Scotland. The Scottish police force has commented that in the first three months of operation it has seen more than an eightfold decrease in the number of people caught speeding on this stretch of road compared with the same time last year when there were 2,493 offenses recorded. See related article in Full-Time Whistle.

 

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ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety #SpeedKills Slow down in school zones and keep our children safe! Learn more: atsol.com/solutions/spee…

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ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety  @CityofWilm red-light safety cameras show scary t-bone collision. Drive safe this weekend & #StopOnRed  youtu.be/YPTiPvCjm2U

ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety Great tips! How to Prevent Pedestrian Fatalities utne.com/community/prev #VisionZero #SpeedKills

ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety DYK? 2012 red-light running fatalities cost the public $6.5 billion. Spread the message #StopOnRed

 

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Toll-Funded Interchange to Open this Spring in Pennsylvania
Construction Equipment Guide, Jan. 28, 2015

A new E-ZPass-only interchange will soon be available to visitors traveling to and from the Pocono Mountains in Carbon County, Pa. The interchange is scheduled to open to traffic in the spring. The $23 million project is funded 100 percent by toll dollars and is being coordinated by the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission. … Design plans include automatic tolling equipment. (Construction Equipment Guide photo)

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Toll Lanes Proposed for I-35 in Texas
WOAI-TV NBC 4 (Texas), Jan. 28, 2015

The Texas Department of Transportation has revealed its plans for the future of I-35 — and yes, it does include toll roads. The proposed toll lanes would stretch for 15 miles from the Loop 410 South interchange to FM 1103 in Schertz. TxDOT believes these additional lanes would relieve congestion that often causes stop-and-go traffic. (WOAI-TV NBC 4 image)

Editorial: Use the Bridges, Pay the Tolls
Abbotsford News (British Columbia, Canada), Jan. 28, 2015

As 42,000 drivers in B.C are discovering, failure to pay their bridge tolls is resulting in ICBC blocking them from driver’s license or vehicle insurance renewals. … It’s not as though these fees are new, or haven’t been thoroughly discussed and debated. … The reality is that the movement of traffic through the region requires river crossings, and those structures are astronomically expensive to build. They have to be financed somehow.

 

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Editorial: Red-Light Camera Use Should Stay City Prerogative
Daily News Journal (Tennessee), Jan. 26, 2015

Although a frequent complaint of Tennessee legislators is that the federal government is encroaching on its authority with enactment of laws, executive action and administrative policies, they often do not have the same reservations in regard to encroachment on local governments. State Rep. Andy Holt’s proposal to introduce a bill banning red-light cameras in the state is a case in point.  Decisions to use red-light cameras have been the responsibility of local governments … if the Legislature makes the decision, we think that’s encroachment on local government authority.

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Letter: Use Cameras to Enforce the Law — or Not
Newsday (New York), Jan. 27, 2015

Traffic law on Long Island is a matter of self-enforcement. There aren’t enough police in the world to adequately enforce traffic rules on the hundreds of thousands of drivers and roads. There are many who follow the rules, but there are far, far too many who have gotten extremely lax, and there are far too many who believe the rules do not apply to them. Use the roads at your discretion. If you violate the law, you are fined and fined and fined until you figure out your time is not more important than the next guy’s.

Letter: Yellow Light Does Not Mean Speed Up
The Dallas Morning News (Texas), Jan. 27, 2015

Even though I have received four citations for rolling right on red, I am pro red-light cameras. I believe that since the inception of the program, intersections have become safer, that drivers think twice about running yellow lights. Also, that if the number of rear-end accidents has actually increased, this supports the need for more enforcement of yellow-light offenders. Drivers need to understand that the yellow light is the precursor to the red, not the signal to speed up and proceed through the intersection.

Letter: Legislator Panders to Red-Light Runners
Knoxville News Sentinel (Tennessee), Jan. 26, 2015

A proposal by state Rep. Andy Holt of Dresden to abolish red-light enforcement cameras statewide is unjustified and dangerous. His accusation that these cameras are for “municipal greed” instead of safety is a factually unfounded personal opinion. … Legislators should not take any action that could diminish public safety by joining Holt’s pandering to traffic violators. If they have questions or doubts, they should consult knowledgeable people and sources and not rely on conjecture, personal opinion and demagoguery from uninformed people such as Holt.

 

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“If our streets were a serial killer, we’d be on the rampage trying to get them to stop. Fact is, it’s not acceptable for anybody to die or be injured in the streets.”
Jon Snyder, Spokane City Councilman
KREM-TV CBS 2 (Washington), Jan. 26, 2015

“I think it’s a great tool. A lot of times when we get the complaints from the driver they probably can’t get a good picture or remember the car or the tag number, so it’s hard for us to follow up on it. If we have a picture, it’s kind of hard for them to deny the violation.”
Bryan Smith, Sergeant with the North Carolina State Highway Patrol, regarding school bus stop arm cameras
CivitasMedia (North Carolina), Jan. 25, 2015

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ATS’ Newsletter, Vol. 5, Issue 6

January 22nd, 2015 Comments off

Header VideoOfTheWeek 480

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Knoxville Police Defend Red-Light Cameras with Visual Evidence
WBIR-TV NBC 10 (Tennessee), Jan. 17, 2015

While a Tennessee legislator wants to ban red-light cameras, Knoxville Police say the cameras help protect the public.

Germantown Could See Red-Light Safety Cameras Return
WMC-TV NBC 5 (Tennessee), Jan. 17, 2015

If approved, red-light safety cameras will soon be installed at three intersections possibly by late March. Germantown city administrator Patrick Lawton said the plan is to bring back red-light cameras in heavy traffic areas to cut down on accidents.

Tennessee Police Departments Say Red-Light Cameras Improve Safety
WCYB-TV NBC 5 (Virginia), Jan. 16, 2015

In an interview with Kingsport and Johnson City police, WCYB-TV heard support for red-light safety camera programs. Both departments said the cameras have made streets safer because they make drivers more aware of their surroundings at intersections. See related article by Knoxville News Sentinel.

 

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Rochester Council Votes to Expand Red-Light Camera Study
WXXI-PBS Radio AM 1370 (New York), Jan. 21, 2015

Rochester City Council voted Tuesday night to expand the red-light camera study. The results of the original study were released last November. The expanded endeavor will try and determine why seven or eight intersections of the 32 with red-light cameras are seeing an increase of violations and an increase in crashes. See earlier coverage by WROC-TV CBS 8.

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Red-Light Camera Petition Dismissed in Willis, Texas
YourHoustonNews.com, Jan. 20, 2015

The Willis City Council has dismissed a petition calling for red-light camera use in the city to be taken to a vote by the electorate in the upcoming May elections. Council members unanimously approved the dismissal of the proposal after consideration and a recommendation by the city attorney. (Conroe Courier photo by Eric S. Swist)

Weld County Sheriff’s Office Warns of Ticket Scam
Reporter-Herald (Colorado), Jan. 20, 2015

The Weld County Sheriff’s Office is reminding people that their office does not contact residents by phone, e-mail or mail to obtain funds for a traffic fine. A telephone con-artist is telling residents to pay their photo radar fine or face arrest. The sheriff’s office advised anyone contacted by someone claiming to be with law enforcement to get the caller’s name, badge number and agency, then tell the caller he or she will contact the agency directly.

More Red-Light Safety Cameras Installed in Westchester
The Pelham Daily Voice (New York), Jan. 20, 2015

More municipalities in Westchester County are installing red-light traffic cameras at popular intersections. Last week, Mount Vernon became the third Westchester city — joining New Rochelle and Yonkers — to install red-light security cameras at popular, densely traveled intersections in an effort to catch motorists on the wrong end of a red light.

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Tracy, Sparks Favor Red-Light Cameras
The Daily News Journal (Tennessee), Jan. 19, 2015

Two state lawmakers who represent Rutherford County favor keeping the city’s red-light cameras in place despite proposed legislation that would ban such traffic enforcement. (Image from 2013 WTVF-TV CBS 5 report)

Red-Light Runners in Mount Vernon Face Tickets
Mid-Hudson News (New York), Jan. 18, 2015

The 30-day warning phase in the new Mount Vernon, N.Y., red-light camera program has ended and motorists who run red lights will start getting $50 fines in the mail.

Newburgh Heights to Hire Officers to Man Traffic Cameras
Cleveland Plain Dealer (Ohio), Jan. 17, 2015

Newburgh Heights is planning to hire full-time police officers to station near its traffic cameras to put them in compliance with a new state law. In December, the Ohio General Assembly passed a law that said tickets issued by traffic cameras wouldn’t be valid without a police officer present. The law was expected to effectively ban the devices.  But Newburgh Heights says the law adds more credibility to tickets issued by the cameras by creating a uniform set of rules surrounding their use. See related article by WOIO-TV Channel 19.

 

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Unlicensed Driver Charged after Hitting 6-Year-Old Exiting Bus
The Queens Courier (New York), Jan. 20, 2015

A Rosedale man has been charged with assault and other charges after he struck a 6-year-old boy as the child was exiting his school bus and then fled the scene. The boy was walking off a stopped school bus in Cambria Heights on Dec. 3, 2014, when he was struck. The child was taken to the hospital, where he was treated for a broken femur. The injury required surgical plates and screws.

Chesterfield Schools Want Cameras to Catch Illegal Passers
The Hopewell News (Virginia), Jan. 16, 2015

Drivers in the county who pass a school bus while it is picking up or dropping off kids could soon be caught on camera and face a big fine. The Chesterfield School Board last month unanimously approved a motion to ask the Board of Supervisors to approve an ordinance to allow cameras to catch bus passers. Related news from the Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that a subcommittee of elected leaders offered no resistance to the idea this week.

Drivers Warned of Big Penalties after Child Hit Exiting School Bus
NJ Advance Media for NJ.com (New Jersey), Jan. 15, 2015

The Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office is warning drivers of big penalties they could face for not yielding to a school bus and asking other motorists to report the violations. The warning comes after a 9-year-old boy was struck by a car Jan. 6 after getting off a bus in Lakewood and dragged approximately 80 feet into an intersection, authorities said. He was listed last week in stable condition, police said.

 

Header Announcements 480

ATS Primary Logo

American Traffic Solutions (ATS) is pleased to its announce that five cities in Maryland recently renewed their red-light safety camera programs for another year. The cities of Cheverly, Greenbelt, Landover Hills, Morningside and Westminster all accepted the one-year renewal options in their agreements. Each municipality signed their original contracts in 2009 with LaserCraft, which ATS acquired in 2010. ATS is particularly honored when clients choose to renew their partnerships, and looks forward to assisting all of its customers with their road safety camera programs.

 

Header TweetOfTheWeek 480

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ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety All you have to do is STOP at the red light. This vehicle learned first-hand what happens when you don’t … http://youtu.be/IdAna_g-WdM?a

IIHS @IIHS_autosafety NHTSA study shows the roads are the safest they’ve ever been http://fw.to/eBx2fZQ

NCSR @SaferRoadsUSA In 2013, more than 3.5 million drivers received red-light violations across 20 states. http://ncsrsafety.org/stop-on-red/

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ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety Someone loves you — drive with care & ALWAYS #StopOnRed. Would this sign make you drive safer? http://tmblr.co/ZC9-Wt1b69JFx

 

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Firm Proposes Inner-Loop Toll Road to Ease Traffic in Baton Rouge
The Advocate (Louisiana), Jan. 17, 2015

An international engineering firm has submitted a preliminary proposal to the state to build an “inner loop” toll road around Baton Rouge. The unsolicited proposal presents a possible public private partnership, which envisions using toll revenue to repay the costs plus a profit. The Louisiana Transportation Authority voted to allow the state Department of Transportation and Development to hire an expert and review the plan. (The Advocate map by John Gipson)

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Is Tampa Ready for Express Toll Lanes?
WFTS-TV ABC Action News (Florida), Jan. 16, 2015

Now that voters on both sides of Tampa Bay have said “no” to light rail, commuters stuck in bumper to bumper traffic have lots of time to ponder another solution to chronic gridlock. A Florida Department of Transportation mailer that went out earlier this week may hold the answer. FDOT has scheduled public meetings to discuss a plan for express toll lanes crisscrossing the Tampa Bay area.

 

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Letter to the Editor: In Defense of Photo Radar and Red-Light Cameras
Denver Post (Colorado), Jan. 21, 2015

If you want to know whether photo enforcement is working, you should ask if it slows down traffic. Then you can ask if slowing traffic enhances safety. Then you’ll know if speed enforcement is worth it to society, assuming one values safety on our city streets over any presumptive time individual drivers might save by speeding.

Letter: Use Technology to Reduce Police Force
Daily Record (Tennessee), Jan. 19, 2015

Technological innovation typically reduces the number of people required to perform the task through traditional methods. … One would think that surveillance cameras would greatly reduce the need for cops on the street. … It is a realistic expectation that the introduction of the drone into police work will almost eliminate the need for police on patrol. Hiring trends in cities and towns indicate otherwise.

 

Header QuoteOfTheWeek 480

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“There is no place in the world that a person needs to rush to when one is confronted with a stopped school bus filled with young children. In this case, a precious few minutes could have prevented a young child from being seriously injured. The defendant now faces felony assault and other charges.”
Richard Brown, District Attorney for Queens, New York
The Queens Courier (New York), Jan. 20, 2015

DeBusk,Darrell_KnoxvilleTennesseePoliceSpokesman_January 2015
“We’re concerned that if you take this program away, you’re going to increase the number of crashes, you’re going to increase the number of significant injuries to individuals, and you’re going to increase the number of fatalities that we see in the city of Knoxville.”
Darrell DeBusk, Public Information Officer with Knoxville Police Department
WBIR-TV NBC 10 (Tennessee), Jan. 17, 2015

 

Coyner,Carrie_SchoolBoardMember_Chesterfield County_Virginia_D
“When we have children who are getting on and off the buses, it’s even more important that you’re paying attention. … I hope we end up at a point in time where no citations are issued because nobody’s doing it. But I think this is one way to bring awareness.”
Carrie Coyner, Chesterfield School Board Representative, Virginia
The Hopewell News (Virginia), Jan. 16, 2015

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“We have been ramping up our speed camera program and we see in places where we put them in, driving speeds can drop by 50 percent in a matter of months.”
Polly Trottenberg, New York City Department of Transportation Commissioner
Home Reporter and Sunset News (New York), Jan. 12, 2015

ATS’ Newsletter, Vol. 5, Issue 5

January 15th, 2015 Comments off

Header MediaCoverage 480

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Mount Vernon Poised to Enforce Red-Light Safety Camera Sites
Daily Voice (New York), Jan. 15, 2014

After a 30-day test period to get motorists acclimated to the city’s new red-light camera locations, the Mount Vernon Police Department is poised to begin enforcing the new program.  See related article in The Journal News(Photo by Marcus Yam for The New York Times)

Arizona Legislators Want to Ban Masks to Avoid Red-Light, Speed Cameras
Tucson Post, Jan. 15, 2015

Three Republican state lawmakers want to make it a crime to wear a mask or Groucho glasses in order to avoid speed and traffic camera tickets. The legislation comes after a driver in 2009 wore a monkey mask to try to get out of 37 speeding camera tickets.

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Police Cameras Now Keep Eye Out for Crime in Miami
Miami Herald (Florida), Jan. 15, 2015

Miami police Chief Manuel Orosa unveiled the city’s ambitious plan to enhance homeland security by widening the lens of policing in Miami through the use of computers and high-powered cameras. … The control center, or Virtual Policing Detail, is filed with eight computers linked to 28 large-screen, 55-inch high-definition TVs hung on four walls. They are all connected to 25 cameras, mostly along the Biscayne Boulevard. … The system has capacity for 2,500 cameras and will eventually link to the 144 red-light cameras around town. (Miami Herald photo by Patrick Farrell)

New Developments Enter Willowbrook’s Budgeting Talks
The Doings Weekly (Illinois), Jan. 13, 2015

Members of the Willowbrook Village Board reviewed the village’s recent economic development and overall financial performance Jan. 12, as they prepared a budget for the new fiscal year that starts May 1. Willowbrook does not collect property taxes from residents and business owners, instead it relies on a combination of sales tax revenue, other taxes, grants funding and revenue generated by its red-light camera program. Currently, this year’s red-light running fine revenue is on pace to raise more than last year.

New Variation of Old Scam Victimizes Greeley Resident
The Tribune (Colorado), Jan. 13, 2015

Greeley police are warning residents about a new variation on an old scam that has victimized at least one local resident. In the new version, a scammer calls residents claiming to be a Greeley police officer. The scammer informs the resident of their need to pay a red-light camera ticket or face arrest. … Greeley police want to remind residents that law enforcement officials do not make such calls.

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Crashes Jump after Red-Light Safety Cameras Are Removed
EfficientGov.com, Jan. 9, 2015

The Houston Police recently reported a drastic increase in both traffic collisions and crashes at intersections where red-light safety cameras had been removed. The recent report adds to a long list of statistics indicating intersections become more hazardous when red-light safety cameras are taken away. (Houston Chronicle photo by Melissa Phillip)

 

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Speed Violations Near Schools Fall 59% at Camera Locations
New York Daily News, Jan. 13, 2015

Speeding has been frighteningly rampant near city schools — but speed cameras are starting to slow down drivers, data obtained by The Daily News shows. On average, nearly 3,539 drivers a day in September sped significantly over the limit on streets near 19 schools, according to speed-camera data provided by the Department of Transportation. In December, as word of the electronic enforcement spread in those neighborhoods, the average daily number of lead-footed violators caught on tape dropped to 1,461 — a 59 percent reduction, the data shows. (WNYC photo by Kate Hinds)

 

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School Bus Cameras Get Results in Georgetown Independent School District
Community Impact Newspapers (Texas), Jan. 14, 2015

Nine months into the implementation of a safety program that stops drivers from passing loading and unloading school buses, Georgetown Independent School District is already seeing improvements. The transportation director for GISD, Walter Prothro, said average daily violations are down and he anticipates the school district will continue the program.

Legislature Group Recaps School Bus Stop Arm Video Laws
School Transportation News, Jan. 13, 2015

The National Conference on State Legislatures released a brief that recaps many of the 13 current state laws that authorize the use of video cameras on school buses to identify motorists who illegally pass while students are present. The latest state to implement a law is South Carolina.

 

Header Announcements 480

ATS Primary Logo

American Traffic Solutions (ATS) is pleased to its announce that both Howard County and Cottage City, Maryland, have accepted their contractual renewal options to extend their red-light safety camera programs for another year, to January 2016. ATS enjoys assisting all of its customers with their road safety camera programs, and is particularly honored when clients choose to continue the partnership.

 

Header TweetOfTheWeek 480

ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety Speeding violations near schools decline 59% after speed-cameras installed across NYC: report nydailynews.com/new-york/nyc-c via @NYDailyNews

ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety  VIDEO: Red-Light Runner T-Bones vehicle in New Orleans. Witnessed drivers like this in your area: #StopOnRed  http://youtu.be/5ue4I_wy-ro?a

 

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Think Tank: Denver Highways Should Be Tolled
The Denver Post (Colorado), Jan. 13, 2015

Much of the Denver metro-area’s traffic congestion could be solved by adding at least $11 billion in new toll lanes on portions of every major interstate and federal highway. In fact, toll lanes could also speed along traffic on the busiest intersections at Denver’s major arterials, says a free-market think tank that studied the state’s roadway problems over the past two years. (E-470 Public Highway Authority photo)

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Toll Lanes a Part of Solution for Bay Area Gridlock
San Jose Mercury News (California), Jan. 9, 2015

In its first congestion report card in five years, the Bay Area’s transportation planning agency said that average congestion — defined as traffic moving 35 mph or less — increased 65 percent in the Bay Area from 2009 to 2013. To address the problem, transportation leaders are calling for more carpool and toll lanes, improved public transit and more commuters shifting work times. (Photo by Alan Dep/Marin IJ Archives)

Header Commentaries 480

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Commentary: Clarifying Misunderstandings about Red-Light Cameras
Newsday (New York), Jan. 9, 2015

At a recent AARP defensive driving course, the instructor said if you challenge a red-light camera ticket and lose, the violation converts to a moving violation. She also said that you could be ticketed if you enter an intersection while the light is yellow but are still there when the light turns red. Are these comments correct? No. Both statements are false.

Commentary: When Did Red Light Stop Meaning Stop?
The Globe and Mail (Canada), Jan. 9, 2015

It’s a trend I spotted during the holiday rush and one that is apparently going to carry on well into the new year: Vancouver drivers running red lights at an alarming rate. … This isn’t just a local problem. In the U.S. the National Coalition for Safer Roads organizes an annual “National Stop on Red Week,” which includes a pledge to do so as well as a list of “Top 10 Reasons to Stop on Red.” Among them is if you’re habitually running red lights you’ll probably end up killing someone.

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Letter to the Editor: Yellow Lights Designed to Slow You Down
Charlotte Observer (North Carolina), Jan. 14, 2015

Show me the statistics on accidents and deaths for running red lights and I am sure they will far outweigh the ones for rear-end collisions. Yellow means stop! It does not mean jump on the gas to try and beat the signal. If you’re driving so fast you have to slam on the brakes when the light turns yellow, then maybe getting hit in the rear end once or twice will slow you down.

 

Header QuoteOfTheWeek 480

Prothro,Walter_TransportationDirector_Georgetown Independent School
“We put five (school bus stop-arm safety) cameras in the hottest areas that we had, and frankly, based on what we’re seeing with those five cameras there is about a 70 percent reduction in the number of violations.
Walter Prothro, Transportation Director for Georgetown Independent School District, Texas
Community Impact Newspaper (Texas), Jan. 14, 2015

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“It’s staggering, and it’s probably going to shock a lot of people that so many cars were speeding right in front of schools. It just shows how much danger is being averted by these cameras.”
Jimmy Van Bramer, New York City Councilman
New York Daily News, Jan. 13, 2015

 

Header Statistics 480

Texas
With the deployment of CrossingGuard school bus stop arm safety cameras in Georgetown Independent School District, the number of illegal passing incidents by vehicles has decreased. Before cameras were deployed, the school district saw an average of 2.6 violations per day per bus. Today, the five buses with cameras have seen an average of 0.58 violations per day. Source: Community Impact Newspaper (Texas), Jan. 14, 2015.

 

 

ATS’ Newsletter, Vol. 5, Issue 4

January 8th, 2015 Comments off

 

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9-Year-Old Hurt in New Jersey When Driver Ignores School Bus’ Warning Signals
Philly.com, Jan. 7, 2015

A 9-year-old New Jersey boy was seriously injured when he was struck and dragged by a car that ignored his school bus’ warning signals, according to prosecutors. … The accident comes less than a week after an 18-year-old from Bucks County was charged with driving past a school bus stop sign in Bensalem in December, fatally striking a 16-year-old girl. See Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office press release. (The Lakewood Scoop image)

Transit Bus Hits Car Stopped for School Bus
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (Georgia), Jan. 7, 2015

A Gwinnett County Transit bus rear-ended a Honda Accord Tuesday that had stopped for a school bus on Beaver Ruin Road, leaving about eight passengers complaining of injuries.

Car Strikes Teen Approaching School Bus
The Marion Star (Ohio), Jan. 5, 2015

A 14-year-old River Valley student suffered non-life-threatening injuries when she was struck by a car while crossing Pole Lane Road north of Ohio 95 to get to her school bus this morning, according to the Ohio Highway Patrol.

With Kids Back in School, Drivers Must Brake4Buses
WNCN-TV NBC 17 (North Carolina), Jan. 5, 2015

Children headed back to school Monday morning and officials across the state of North Carolina want to make sure that drivers pay attention to school buses as they pick up and drop off kids from school.

Child Hit at Bus Stop Recalls Horrifying Moment
WNCN-TV NBC 17 (North Carolina), Jan. 5, 2015

Two children are still recovering after a truck hit them while they were getting on their school bus in Wilson County. … The 10-ten-old boy was knocked unconscious for two days and spent 21 days in the hospital. He had a fractured leg, pelvis, rib and collar bone. His 5-year-old sister had a broken leg and a broken nose.

 

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Report: Florida’s Red-Light Running Crashes Decrease
ITS International, Jan. 6, 2015

Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles’ recently released third annual Red-Light Camera Summary Report analyzed data from 68 police agencies in cities and towns in Florida where red-light safety cameras are deployed, and revealed a decrease in red-light running violations and crashes at intersections with red-light safety cameras. The findings are consistent with results from previous state reports affirming the effectiveness of this important law enforcement tool. Total violations decreased 14 percent from 2013. View original press release. View state report. (Tampa Bay Times photo by Jim Damaske)

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Analysis: Charlotte’s Red-Light Cameras May Have Prevented Serious Wrecks
The Charlotte Observer (North Carolina), Jan. 4, 2015

Red-light cameras, removed from Charlotte’s streets in 2006 because of a state court ruling, may have prevented serious wrecks at dangerous intersections, records examined by the Observer showed. The review comes as Fayetteville prepares to reinstall its red-light cameras this summer, saying they help with traffic safety. (WBTV-TV CBS 3/The Charlotte Observer photo)

Red-Light Running Dangerous, Problematic
Ocala Star Banner (Florida), Jan. 4, 2015

Failing to stop at a red light is the “most common cause of all urban crashes,” according to the Federal Highway Administration. In 2013, the most recent complete year of data available, the Florida Highway Patrol issued 122 citations for running a red light, city police agencies issued 259 and the Marion County Sheriff’s Office issued 36. There were 824 cases of red-light running countywide.

Safety, Not Money Drives Capitola’s Red-Light Camera Program
Santa Cruz Sentinel (California), Jan. 4, 2015

Capitola isn’t capitalizing on those red-light cameras. In fact, the city hasn’t made a dime off them. … Where the traffic camera is coming up short in profit for the city, it is making up for in the name of safety. The number of traffic collisions has dropped by more than half on 41st Avenue.

 

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Crashes Drop at 2 Franklin Park Intersections
Franklin Park Herald-Journal (Illinois), Jan. 2, 2015

Crashes decreased at two Franklin Park intersections over a three-year period after red-light enforcement cameras were installed. The improvements show an 11 percent decrease at one intersection and a 54 percent decrease at another. (Franklin Park Herald Journal file photo)

Cities Fight Back Against Anti-Camera Ruling
WIOD-Radio 610 AM (Florida), Dec. 25, 2014 

Cities are fighting back against a ruling on red-light cameras. A state appeals court has ruled the city of Hollywood violated Florida law by relying on a private company to hand out red-light running tickets. A group representing more than 400 cities, towns, and counties filed a brief with the 4th District court of appeal supporting a state law they say gives those governments the authority to let a private company issue red-light running tickets.

Keeping Roads Safe
Denton  Record-Chronicle (Texas), Dec. 23, 2014

City officials in Denton deem the red-light camera program a success and insist they will oppose any legislation that might ban red-light cameras, which are not popular with many citizens who equate them with a Big Brother-like atmosphere.

 

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Police Ticket Driver Doing Donuts Near Speed Radar Van
Boulder Daily Camera (Colorado), Jan. 5, 2015

As a photo radar officer in her van was preparing to go on shift early Monday, she saw a vehicle driving recklessly in a nearby parking lot on 30th Street, according to Boulder police spokeswoman Kim Kobel. Police later ticketed the 52-year-old driver who was seen doing donuts in the parking lot and fled into the police department’s visitors parking lot.

 

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ATS Primary Logo

American Traffic Solutions (ATS) is pleased to announce its latest agreements with new and existing clients. The city of Federal Way, Washington, an ATS client since 2008, has signed a new three-year agreement with an optional three-year extension, to continue its red-light and school zone speed safety camera programs. Additionally, Charles County, Maryland, executed a one-year renewal of its road-safety camera program, extending its original 2009 contract. Head Start of Washington County, Maryland, has agreed to implement a CrossingGuard School Bus Stop-Arm Safety Camera Program under the terms of a five-year agreement already in effect between ATS and the Board of County Commissioners of Washington County, Maryland. ATS is honored to work with all of its clients on their road safety camera programs.

 

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USA TODAY @USATODAY  Think before you run that red. pic.twitter.com/D7D9CV7nwi

 

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ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety VIDEO: Blatant Red-Light Running Caught on Tape in Miami Springs, FL. #StopOnRed RT if you agree! http://youtu.be/hD94f25NLag?a

 

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ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety DHSMV report shows red-light safety cameras are saving lives in #Florida. Watch how dangers red-light… http://youtu.be/we4oJUvAMM4?a

 

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$20 Million Loan OK’d for Tomball Tollway Project
Houston Chronicle (Texas), Jan. 6, 2015

Commissioners Court on Tuesday  approved a loan of up to $20 million from the Harris County Toll Road Authority to its Montgomery County counterpart to help finance construction of the Tomball Tollway. (Houston Chronicle photo by Smiley N. Pool)

Connector Route on Fast Road to Success
The Tampa Tribune (Florida), Jan. 3, 2015

For truckers, time means money. And at least some of those hauling freight from Port Tampa Bay are saving time by using the year-old toll road connecting Interstate 4 and the Selmon Expressway. The $420 million connector is saving some of them enough time every two days that they can fit in an extra trip from the port to distribution centers in Polk County and elsewhere.

 

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Commentary: Making New York City’s Streets Safer for Pedestrians
New York Daily News, Jan. 2, 2015

New York City’s record year for safety was no accident, but the result of years of accumulated and hard-won gains. The single biggest change in this year of the pedestrian came not from any public projects, but from the inspiring advocacy of families of people killed by motor vehicles. (New York Daily News photo by Theodore Parisienne)

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Editorial: Pesky Cameras Keep Wilmington’s Streets a Little Safer
Star News Online (North Carolina), Jan. 5, 2015

As a rule, drivers hate red-light cameras. So do some state lawmakers. But cameras such as the 13 that monitor various intersections in Wilmington improve traffic safety and may save lives, and that is reason enough to keep them. … The City Council has found that the benefits outweigh the cost. The city’s streets still see too many mishaps, but those inconvenient cameras do their part to help reduce wrecks, damage and, most important, injuries.

Editorial: Traffic Cameras Have Proved to Save Lives
The Seattle Times (Washington), Dec. 30, 2014

While Auburn recently abandoned its red-light cameras, Seattle has found some success with its own cameras — both in reducing accidents and generating revenue.

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Letter to the Editor: Blaming Law for Accident Is Illogical
Charlotte Observer (North Carolina), Jan. 7, 2015

Forum writer Tom Daoust says the red-light camera caused him to obey the law and therefore caused his accident. Are you kidding? The implication is that if we all ran red lights there would be fewer rear-end collisions. I can only assume that maybe one of his “injuries requiring months of medical attention” was a head injury.

Letter: A New Year’s Resolution for Bainbridge
Inside Bainbridge (Washington), Jan. 3, 2015

With the recent injuries on Bainbridge Island roads, it is time for all of us to make a New Year’s Resolution to make Bainbridge Island streets safer for all. … Remember when you decide to pass a school bus that has stopped to let children out, not only are you breaking the law, but you may be injuring or killing one of your neighbor’s children.

 

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“I think people become aware of where (red-light enforcement cameras) are and start to follow the law in coming to a complete stop. Now they have to come to a complete stop rather than a rolling stop or get a violation.”
Mike Witz, Police Chief of Village of Franklin Park, Illinois
Franklin Park Herald-Journal, Jan. 2, 2014

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“Red-light cameras are one of the many tools in the ‘safety tool box’ to improve traffic safety in our city; and should continue to be used.”
John Davis, Director of Engineering Services for City of Denton
Denton Record-Chronicle (Texas), Dec. 23, 2014


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North Carolina
After red-light cameras were removed in Charlotte, the percentage of accidents that resulted in injury increased from 24 percent with cameras in place to 33 percent without cameras. From 2003 to 2006, no motorists were killed or involved in a life-threatening accident at intersections with cameas. Since the cameras were removed, two people have died and about 20 were seriously injured. Source: Charlotte Observer, Jan. 4, 2015.

Washington
In the eight years since red-light cameras were introduced in Seattle, collisions have declined in 17 of the 20 red-light camera intersections from comparable periods before and after their installations, according to police figures. Source: The Seattle Times, Dec. 30, 2014.

In Bellevue, the number of speeding and red-light camera infractions decreased from 22,798 in 2010 to 11,956 in 2013, according to police. Source: The Seattle Times, Dec. 30, 2014.

ATS’ Newsletter, Vol. 5, Issue 3

December 18th, 2014 Comments off

 

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Wishing Everyone a Safe and Happy Holiday Season
Holiday time is travel time, and American Traffic Solutions urges everyone to exercise an extra measure of caution on the road during this hectic season. Drive carefully and enjoy this wonderful time of year. Road Safety Ink will return in the New Year after a two-week break in publication. Happy Holidays.

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Community Mourns Death of Teen Boarding School Bus
KYW-Radio 1060 AM/CBS Philly (Pennsylvania), Dec. 17, 2014

A 16-year-old girl was struck and killed by an SUV while she was walking to her school bus in Buck County Wednesday Morning. According to investigators, the school bus was stopped on the road with its flashing lights on. Police say the driver of a 1984 Ford Bronco ran through the signal and drove past the bus, hitting the teen, who was attempting to get on her school bus.

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Red-Light Runners Caught on Camera in Granite City
Belleville News-Democrat (Illinois), Dec. 16, 2014

Granite City Police Chief Richard E. Miller says the red-light safety camera at 27th Street and Madison Avenue has “virtually eliminated traffic crashes at that intersection, and it works in an unexpected way to slow down traffic on that whole thoroughfare.” The videos posted to the city’s Facebook page still get thousands of views in a matter of days. See related article at Belleville News-Democrat.

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Council’s Vote Moves Denver Toward Photo Enforcement Expansion
KDVR-TV FOX 31 (Colorado), Dec. 15, 2014

The Denver City Council took the first step Monday night to expand the red light and photo radar speed camera program in the city. The council gave initial approval to plans to extend the contract with the vendor by six months so city officials can examine the programs. The final vote on the measure will take place later. See related news from KCNC-TV CBS 4.

Bus Company Takes Steps to ID Driver Suspected of Running Red Light
CBC News (Canada), Dec. 15, 2014

The Toronto Transportation Commission confirms it is investigating a video posted online that appears to show one of its buses running a red light in Scarborough.

 

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Ohio Supreme Court Upholds Red-Light Safety Cameras
ABC News, Dec. 18, 2014

A divided Ohio Supreme Court on Thursday again upheld use of traffic camera enforcement by the state’s municipalities, reversing a lower court after a year of legal setbacks for camera use. The Supreme Court justices ruled 4-3 to stick to its 2008 ruling in a challenge to Akron cameras that cities have “home-rule authority” to use the cameras to catch speeders and red-light runners. See related article from Northeast Ohio Media Group/Cleveland.com. (Photo by The Plain Dealer)

Glassboro Officials Say Red-Light Safety Cameras Increased Safety
South Jersey Times (New Jersey), Dec. 17, 2014

Many towns in New Jersey fought to keep the red-light safety camera program going, arguing the cameras have improved safety. Officials in Glassboro echoed that concern, even if they didn’t publicly lobby state legislators to keep the cameras on. Glassboro administrator Joseph Brigandi said, “Glassboro’s red-light safety camera was responsible for an 83.3 percent decrease in overall incidents at the intersection during the first year of operation alone.”

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Judge Shoots Down Lawsuit Challenging Cameras
New York Telegraph, Dec. 16, 2014

A Manhattan judge has put the brakes on a class-action lawsuit challenging the city’s red-light camera program. “Plaintiffs cannot assert in good faith that it is against equity and good conscience to allow a municipality to levy fines against individuals who drive through red lights and thus pose a danger to society,” Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Kathryn Feed wrote in her decision released Monday.

City Re-Signs Contract for Red-Light Safety Cameras
Conroe Courier/YourHoustonNews (Texas), Dec. 16, 2014

The Willis City Council gave the go-ahead Tuesday night to renew its current deal to keep the cameras in place at major intersections — pending the outcome of a petition. Council members approved the five-year agreement with American Traffic Solutions by a vote of 2-to-1, with one abstention.

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Red-Light Cameras to Remain at 3 Intersections in Gwinnett
WSB-Radio  750 AM 95.5 FM (Georgia), Dec. 16, 2014

Gwinnett commissioners voted Tuesday to renew the annual contract with American Traffic Solutions. Commission Chair Charlotte Nash, who was not at the Dec. 2 meeting, voted in favor. “It’s the right thing to do,” she said. (Gwinnett Daily Post photo by Kristi Reed)

Somerset County Official Open to Red-Light Cameras
NJ Advance Media for NJ.com (New Jersey), Dec. 16, 2014

Although Somerset County towns didn’t participate in the state’s red-light camera pilot program, county principal traffic engineer Joe Fishinger said he wouldn’t discourage municipalities from joining the program if it is continued.

Lost Red-Light Running Revenue Not an Issue in Bergen County
NJ Advance Media for NJ.com (New Jersey), Dec. 16, 2014

Officials in the two Bergen County towns with red-light cameras say they’re not worried about the revenue lost with the end of the red-light camera program Tuesday. “It’s a safety issue to me more than a monetary issue,” Englewood Cliffs Police Chief Michael Cioffi said. “I’m not worried about the money.”

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Brick Lost Nearly $1 Million with Early Camera Shut-Down Decision
NJ Advance Media for NJ.com (New Jersey), Dec. 15, 2014

The township of Brick lost nearly $1 million in revenue by shutting off its red-light cameras earlier than the controversial program that ended Tuesday. (Daily Record photo by Thomas P. Costello)

Survey: Americans Support Red-Light Safety Cameras
FindLaw.com and PR Newswire, Dec. 15, 2014

Despite the controversy surrounding red-light safety cameras, a majority of Americans favor their use at intersections, according to a new survey from Findlaw.com, the most popular legal information website. The survey found that 56 percent of Americans support the use of red-light cameras, while 44 percent oppose them.

Pinellas County IDs Most Crash-Prone Intersections in Tampa Bay
Tampa Bay Times (Florida), Dec. 14, 2014

Pinellas County officials recently analyzed nearly 18,000 traffic accidents from 2012. Most of the country’s 106 traffic deaths that year — 58 percent of them — were pedestrians, bicyclists or motorcyclists.

Crashes Feared as Red-Light Cameras Go
The Columbus Dispatch (Ohio), Dec. 14, 2014

Red-light cameras that have flashed at wayward motorists for years at 38 Columbus intersections soon will come down. What happens after, though, worries the city. Right-angle crashes at city intersections equipped with red-light cameras dropped by about 73 percent through 2012 — the last year for which data were available — and the numbers are expected to return to their pre-camera levels after they’re removed, said George Speaks, director of the city’s Department of Public Safety.

 

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Student Faces Surgery for Multiple Injuries
Eagle-Tribune (Massachusetts), Dec. 17, 2014

A high school sophomore struck early Monday morning by a hit-and-run driver has a ruptured spleen, leg and arm fractures, a head injury and more and will be undergoing surgery this week. “The bottom line is, he is pretty banged up. And he is the oldest of five children, so there are four other kids affected here too,” said the teen’s grandmother. The student was in a Lowell Street crosswalk trying to get aboard a stopped school bus when he was struck by a full-size white pickup. See related coverage from School Transportation News.

3 Injured when SUV Rear-Ends School Bus
KHOU-TV CBS 11 (Texas), Dec. 17, 2014

According to the Santa Fe Police Department, a school bus picking up children was struck from behind by a silver SUV. Three people were injured.

School Bus Video Evidence Bill Advances in Canada
School Transportation News, Dec. 17, 2014

Legislation introduced last month in Canada would allow “photographs” from school bus camera systems to be used as evidence of illegal passing incidents at stops. The camera footage would demontrate to law enforcement that a vehicle and driver did not stop before reaching the school bus and then proceeded to pass the bus despite red lights flashing.

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Loveland Man Killed in Car Collision
KUSA-TV NBC 9 (Colorado), Dec. 15, 2014

A 78-year-old man died after his 1993 Dodge Dakota rear-ended a vehicle that was stopped for a northbound school bus.

Teen Dies After Pickup Rear-Ends Car Stopped for School Bus
Greenfield Reporter (Indiana), Dec. 13, 2014

Police say a 17-year-old boy has died from injuries sustained in a car crash. Police say the boy was riding in the back seat of a Nissan Altima that had stopped for a school bus in Sutton, Massachusetts, when it was struck from the rear by a Ford F-350 pickup truck driven by a 17-year-old whom police say was driving 45 mph in a 35 mph zone.

Driver Strikes Student Approaching School Bus
Time Warner Cable News (North Carolina), Dec. 13, 2014

An elderly man faces felony charges after hitting a high school student with his car. The school district said the student was walking toward her stopped school bus when she was hit. The driver told authorities he thought the bus’s flashing red-lights were a fire truck.

New Bus Cameras Prompt Warnings to Drivers in Georgia
WSB-Radio 750, 92.5 FM (Georgia), Dec. 12, 2014

Warnings are now being issued to motorists who fail to stop for school buses in Gwinnett County. … In this past week, authorities determined 65 percent of those vehicles caught on camera violated the law while 35 percent have not.

 

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ATS Primary Logo

American Traffic Solutions is pleased to announce that its red-light safety camera agreement with Gwinnett County, Georgia, has been renewed through 2015. ATS has been Gwinnett County’s road safety camera provider since 2010, although the county first began using red-light safety cameras in 2005. ATS is honored by the county’s decision to continue with its program.

 

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ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety “The (RLSC) program has been very effective in reducing accidents, which is why we have it in Gwinnett.” gwinnettdailypost.com/news/2014/dec/…

Matt O’Donnell @matt_odonnell BREAKING: Driver killed 15yr old girl trying to get on school bus in Bensalem. Police say driver ignored stop arm. http://buff.ly/1szM4bX

NCSR @SaferRoadsUSA More than 3.5 million drivers received a red-light violation in across the 20 states in 2013!  #StopOnRed

 

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Electronic Tolling Boosts Massachusetts’ Clean Air Goals
North Reading Patch, Dec. 17, 2014

Massachusetts is on pace to reach its greenhouse gas emission goals. The range of work in progress includes the removal of toll booths across the state, and replacing them with all-electric tolling, which will either work like an EZ-Pass or recognize driver’s license plates and send a bill. The upgraded toll booths are meant to reduce emissions by eliminating the need for drivers to stop and start at tolls.

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Plate Pass Fleet Toll Program Adds Georgia Peach Pass
Sys-Con Media, Dec. 16, 2014

American Traffic Solutions is pleased to announce that PlatePass, the company’s fleet toll program, has added the state of Georgia to its nationwide coverage.

North Carolina Proposes I-77 Toll Lanes Near State Line
WCNC-TV NBC 36, Dec. 16, 2014

Drivers in the Lake Norman area aren’t the only ones who could have miles of tolls lanes. A nine-mile stretch of I-77 from I-485 to south of uptown to the state line is also on the state’s wish list for future managed lanes, according to North Carolina Department of Transportation’s Draft 10-year State Transportation Improvement Program. That means HOV, express or toll lanes.

 

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Commentary: Red-Light Cameras Save Precious Lives
The Daytona Beach News-Journal (Florida), Dec. 14, 2014

It’s been more than 11 years since a red-light runner upended my life, yet it feels like yesterday. I was nine months pregnant in October 2003 when a driver ran a red light and killed my husband at an intersection near our home in Bradenton. My daughter has never heard her father’s laughter, felt his beautiful hug or squeezed his hand. Each day, we feel his absence in our lives and we miss him. I miss him. My husband’s death is a testament to the plain fact that red-light running kills people, and yet this dangerous practice continues.

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Editorial: Revisit Red-Light Safety Cameras
Reflector (North Carolina), Dec. 16, 2014

Crosswalks at Greenville’s busy intersections, as we pointed out in this space last month, are unsafe and need attention. One measure that could make crosswalks safer for pedestrians and motorists: installing red-light cameras.

Editorial: Correct Use of Speed Cameras Reduces Crashes
Newsday (New York), Dec. 13, 2014

In places where school-zone speed cameras have been used sensibly for a significant period, they have helped. In Mesa, Arizona, for instance, serious injury collisions in intersections monitored for speed declined by 35.5 percent between 2007 and 2011, and school-hour speeds at the monitored schools dropped by an average of more than 8 mph after cameras were deployed.

Editorial: There Is a Problem with Speeding Near Schools
Newsday (New York), Dec. 13, 2014

46,570 — That’s the number of tickets issued by Nassau County’s school-zone speed cameras to people exceeding the speed limit by more than 21 mph, in about three months. For drivers going 16 to 20 mph over the limit, 117,971 tickets were issued. And for those going 11 to 15 mph above the limit, 247,509 were issued. These figures from program administrator American Traffic Solutions prove there is a problem with speeding near schools that needs attention. A 74 percent drop-off in tickets over 14 weeks shows cameras do help change behavior.

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Letter to the Editor: Seitz’ Law Is Not the Answer
The Columbus Dispatch (Ohio), Dec. 15, 2014

So Senator Bill Seitz got a “ticky-tacky ticket” (his words) for running a red light camera-controlled intersection. Rather than admit he broke the law (and got caught) he wants to do away with the law! I’ve seen some sore losers in my time but this beats them all! Judging by letters to the Dispatch it seems that a majority of Dispatch readers want to RETAIN the cameras. Why not put it up to a vote?

Letter: Cameras Put Safety in Focus
The Blade (Ohio), Dec. 13, 2014

I agree with your Nov. 29 editorial “Maintain traffic cameras.” Ohio should keep these cameras. Many traffic accidents happen because of speeding. Traffic cameras deter speeding. Instead of getting rid of these cameras, the state should improve the current ones’ efficiency.

Letter: Red-Light Cameras’ True Value Is Safety
The Columbus Dispatch (Ohio), Dec. 12, 2014

I live in Columbus and watch drivers go through red lights daily, along with stop signs and yield signs. Human life is so important that I think cameras should be used at every required stopping point. It’s time we start thinking of lives rather than accommodating people’s radical driving habits.

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“Fear of the citation is what has caused a dramatic decline in the crashes. … It works to the principle of negative reinforcement. This program has been incredibly successful.”
George Speaks, Department of Public Safety Director for City of Columbus
The Columbus Dispatch (Ohio), Dec. 15, 2014

“The red-light cameras are another tool in the traffic engineering tool box. I would like to use them where they’re applicable so I’d like to see the program continue in some form. Anything I can get to make my job easier, prevent crashes and litigate the various crashes, I would want to have at my disposal.”
Joe Fishinger, Somerset County Principal Traffic Engineer
NJ Advance Media for NJ.com (New Jersey), Dec. 16, 2014

“It does improve driver behavior, and it’s carried over to other intersections where there aren’t red-light cameras. Instead of running that amber light to beat the red light, people are now stopping.”
Peter Brown, Linden Councilman
The Daily Journal (New Jersey), Dec. 16, 2014

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New Jersey
At the red-light camera intersection of Sylvan and Palisades avenues in Englewood Cliffs, crashes and tickets have decreased over time. There were 30 collisions at the intersection in the year before cameras were installed. In the year after, from June 2012 through May 2013, the number dropped to 23. It then fell to 12 the following year. The number of tickets issued also decreased, from 17,688 in year one to 9,170 in year two. Source: NJ Advance Media for NJ.com, Dec. 16, 2014.