EDISON – New data released this week by the Township of Edison shows a 32-percent reduction in accidents at three of the township’s most problematic intersections since the inception of an automated photo enforcement program to ticket drivers who run red lights.
According to the data, right angle crashes are down 71% (down from 14 to 4) and same-direction (rear-end) crashes are down 17 percent (down from 110 to 91).
“Right-angle crashes are the most deadly type of collision on our roadways. This reduction is very encouraging. It tells us the red light cameras are having a positive impact. Drivers are slowing down and acting more cautiously,” said Edison Mayor Antonia Ricigliano.
Total Crash Reduction from individual intersections include:
- Route 1 and Plainfield Avenue: 29% reduction (from 85 to 60)
- Route 1 and Prince Street: 24% reduction (from 51 to 39)
- Route 1 and Wooding Avenue: 50% reduction (from 40 to 20)
“The red light cameras are one of the most powerful tools we have at our disposal to deter dangerous driving behaviors at intersections,” said Ricigliano. “In the future, we hope to see an even greater reduction in crashes as community awareness increases.”
Last year, the state Department of Transportation released a report showing ambiguous results with limited data. While all types of crashes had decreased from year one to year two at two locations with two full years of operational data, rear-end collisions increased 20 percent overall from pre-camera installation levels by the end of the first year of operation.
Critics of red light camera traffic enforcement systems contend that they exist primarily to bolster municipal budgets. Republican state Sen. Michael Doherty has introduced legislation that would direct towns to deposit all fines collected from violations recorded by red light cameras into the state’s Highway Safety Fund to remove this financial incentive. He is also running an online petition to allow people to tell the Legislature to end the state’s red light camera pilot program.
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