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Red light cams cutting wrecks, says TPD report

Photo: Video by kgun9.com

Red light cams cutting wrecks, says TPD report

CREATED Jan. 2, 2013

Reporter: Craig Smith

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - You may love to hate red light cameras but Tucson Police say they really are cutting down dangerous wrecks.

But Police are citing firm figures to show the cameras may make you less likely to run into someone else and less likely someone will run into you.

You may roll up to the robocams with a sense of foreboding but some drivers are learning to love how they make drivers behave.

Richard Clark says: "I think more people are driving more cautiously because of that."

Steve Castor says, "I'm much more cautious at the intersections that I think there are cameras."

KGUN9 reporter Craig Smith asked: "Does that behavior carry over into all intersections or just the photo cameras?"

Castor: "That's hard to say.  I'm usually pretty cautious at intersections anyway so.."
    
Figures from TPD back up what some drivers are feeling.
    
The department looked at eight intersections where red light cameras are now.

The year before there were any cameras those intersections had 188 wrecks.  As cameras went up, accidents at those intersections went down to 74.

"That's exactly what we intended it to do, says Sgt. Steve Culbertson of TPD's Traffic Division.  He says, "I know there's been heat about, we've done it as a revenue generator, we've done it for other kinds of reasons but the fact of the matter is is we've done it to try to reduce the number of  fatals that we have and certainly to have drivers carry that behavior onto their driving behavior no matter where they're at, regardless of whether there's a camera there or not."

And the report says once you've been slapped with a red light ticket, you're not likely to get one again. Repeat offenders are only about eight percent.
   
You can read this report yourself, by clicking right here.
       
People are sensitive about the money from the fines.  The total fine, including various fees is about 344 dollars.  Of that about 167 goes to the city--and the city has to pay the company that runs the cameras. The rest goes to the state and the county. You can also find the detail on that split in this report.

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