A decision has been made. Boca Raton will be getting five new intersection red-light cameras by August, according to The Palm Beach Post News. This decision has been delayed for months now while the city awaited legal challenges and possible action from the Legislature.
“The state did not ban them and a lot of the legal challenges are winding down, so we’re going forward,” said Assistant City Manager Mike Woika said.
Boca Raton car accident attorneys understand that stopping red-light runners may be the best plan of attack for decreasing the risks of intersection accidents. Hollywood, Sunrise and Boynton Beach are all communities that have chosen to add cameras at their most dangerous intersections. Boca Raton will soon be added to that list, but not everyone’s for it. Some believe that these cameras are just an easy way to the state to generate revenue.
The new cameras, to be installed by August, will be at the following intersections:
-Glades Road and NW 15th Avenue, pointing east and west.
-Glades Road and St. Andrews Boulevard, pointing south, east and west.
-Yamato Road and St. Andrews Boulevard, pointing north.
-Yamato Road and Jog Road, pointing west.
-Clint Moore Road and Military Trail, pointing east.
The city will be installing signs at the intersections with cameras. Drivers that are photographed running red lights will receive warnings for the first 30 days the cameras are operating. After the warning period, drivers who are busted at these intersections will be fined $158. These violations will not include points on the driver’s license.
Out of each fine, the city will receive $75, the state will get $67.20 and the county will get $15.80.
Red-light cameras have been in debate across the United States for quite some time now. They’ve previously been installed in more than 500 cities and towns in 25 states. They’re about to come down in Los Angeles, if the Police Commission gets its way. Anti-camera parties have been rallying against the eye in the sky since the program first launched.
Many people oppose the cameras because they argue that they’re only used as a tool to increase revenue for the areas that they’re operating in. They also argue that these cameras are only citing drivers for mostly minor infractions instead of preventing accidents, according to MSNBC.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has previous stated that revenue is an invalid justification for the use of these cameras.
Figures don’t lie though. It is reported that the 400 cameras in Chicago, for example, have generated more than $64 million for the city in 2009. Some cities don’t receive as much money as they’d like though because these types of tickets often go unpaid.
Ignoring the money talk, more than a dozen studies have concluded that these intersection cameras reduce the number of accidents and injuries.
A recent study, from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, concludes that there has been a significant decrease in the number of deaths from red light accidents in cities where red-light cameras have been installed. It just so happens that deaths from all accidents in all areas have dropped significantly as well during the same time period.
Until more research can be conducted and the system more thoroughly combed through, the debate will continue. Are red-light cameras saving lives at intersections or earning cities a quick buck?