A report released yesterday by the U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Highway Administration shows that red light running violations decreased by as much as 60% at intersections where cameras automatically enforce the law.
The report analyzed results of red light running camera programs in Los Angeles County; San Francisco; New York City; Howard County, MD; and Polk County, FL.
In Los Angeles, cameras were installed at rail-grade crossings. Reductions in violations by 92%, 78% and 34% were found at each of three crossings where cameras were initially installed.
Six months into the pilot program in San Francisco, the number of vehicles photographed running red lights at intersections with enforcement cameras decreased more than 40%.
A 38% reduction in violations in New York City led to the extension of state legislation enabling the use of automated enforcement.
Maryland's public education and awareness program, which included automated cameras at selected intersections, resulted in a decrease in violations from 90 per day to 60.
Florida transportation officials reported that this technology brought about a decrease in violations and proved to be accurate, safe, reliable and cost effective.
In 1998, there were almost 1.8 million intersection crashes, including those caused by drivers running red lights. The crashes resulted in 1.2 million injuries and more than 8,000 deaths.