NJ Officials: Red Light Camera Pilot Program Won’t Add Any Additional Locations

NJTODAY.NET's online business directory

TRENTON – The New Jersey Department of Transportation today announced that no new locations will be added to the list of authorized red light camera intersections because there would not be sufficient time to gather useful data under the pilot program that is scheduled to end as early as December 2014.

The Department will continue to gather and analyze data from the roster of 76 authorized and operational red-light camera intersections throughout the state.

In order for information gathered from cameras to be statistically significant, a minimum of two years of data is necessary. Since the study could end as early as 20 months from now, adding new cameras at this point will not be useful in assisting in the determination of their overall worth.

NJDOT safety engineers have determined that the current level of participation will provide the Department with sufficient data to make an informed and responsible recommendation on the effectiveness of red light cameras in New Jersey.

While many municipalities have expressed interest in participating in the program and have submitted applications concerning specific intersections, none of these applications will be considered for inclusion in the program.

“I’ll take Governor Christie’s decision as further evidence that New Jersey’s red light camera pilot program is a failure,” said state Sen. Michael Doherty (R-Hunterdon, Warren, Somerset), a foe of the camera program. “Studies have indicated, and local officials have acknowledged, that the use of red light cameras does not improve safety.

The red light camera pilot program, authorized by an act of the Legislature in 2008 with implementation beginning in 2009, aims to determine whether red light cameras promote safety by reducing the frequency and severity of crashes at intersections that have a history of motorists running red lights. The first cameras were activated in December 2009.

The law requires NJDOT to annually provide to the Legislature a report containing crash statistics and trends for all intersections in the state where a red light camera has been operating for at least one full year. The second-year report was issued in November 2012, and it contains data showing that the total number of accidents, the total number of accidents resulting in injuries, and the total cost of accidents all increased at intersections after red light cameras were installed, according to Doherty.

NJDOT administers the pilot program but has no role in the selection of camera equipment vendors, the contracts among vendors and municipalities or the issuance of violation notices.


Connect with NJTODAY.NET


Join NJTODAY.NET's free Email List to receive occasional updates delivered right to your email address!
Email ads@njtoday.net for advertising information Send stuff to NJTODAY.NET Like Us On Facebook Follow Us On Twitter Download this week's issue of NJTODAY.NET
  • http://www.facebook.com/people/James-Walker/100003394056675 James Walker

    This is a small but good step. To control a “bad epidemic” like red light cameras, one must first stop it from spreading.

    If
    red light cameras ticketed ONLY unsafe drivers, they would issue far
    too few citations to even pay their own high operational costs,
    typically $4,000 to $5,000 per month per camera. Camera must abusively
    ticket mostly safe drivers for revenue, or they lose too much money to
    be justified.

    Yellow intervals are set slightly too short with
    various forms of trickery and as little as a few tenths of second too
    short is enough for profitability. This is abusive for revenue, not
    safety.

    Most ticketed right on red actions are totally safe.
    Federal research shows all right on red turns (legal or illegal) account
    for only 0.4% of all crashes and only 0.06% of crashes involving
    injuries or fatalities. So 99.6% to 99.94% of all right on red tickets
    are issued abusively for revenue, not safety.

    The NJ DOT was
    well aware of the abuses before the programs began, but allowed the
    cameras anyway. Camera companies depend on the abuses as key parts of
    their business plans to ticket safe drivers. And cities jump on the
    revenue gravy train, knowing the cameras are abusive for revenue.

    Then
    when crashes were shown to be higher in NJ with the cameras, the state
    and the cities continued the abusive programs for revenue.

    The
    only real solution is a total ban on all ticket cameras statewide. The
    enormous amount of revenue to be made overcomes morality at both the
    local and state levels, so a ban is the only permanent solution. If you
    agree, contact your state Assemblymen and Senators and the Governor to
    say you want all ticket cameras permanently banned statewide.

    James C. Walker, Life Member-National Motorists Association