by Pam Zubeck
To all those who got snagged by a flashing camera at one of four intersections with red-light cameras, take heart: The city has decided to deep-six the project.
The city is junking the program because it didn't do enough to reduce crashes, and it would be better to use the 2.5 employees dedicated to the program in other ways, according to a press release.
Here's the full release:
Just over one year after installing four photo red light enforcement camera systems at local intersections, the City is reviewing the pilot program and will propose an end for the program for not meeting safety expectations. The contract will run out at the end of the year.
The photo speed enforcement program, which features a mobile speed van, will continue.
“When we decided to test the technology, we had hopes of making a significant difference in motorist safety,” explained Interim Police Chief Pete Carey. “A review of the data after one year shows conflicting information at best. We discussed the program with Mayor Bach and determined citizens would be best served if we reassigned personnel to other priority functions.”
The move will free up 2.5 full-time employees for reassignment.
According to data supplied by program partner, American Traffic Solutions, Inc. (ATS), while there was an overall modest (30 percent) reduction in red-light running violations through September, results varied widely. For example, the program had a 22 percent increase in violations at the north-bound approach on Nevada Avenue at Bijou Street. In addition, preliminary information from the City’s Traffic Engineering and Police Departments showed the program had no impact on dangerous front-to-side collisions at program intersections.
Mayor Bach said, “The photo red-light enforcement program did not meet our expectations. It is as simple as that. If a safety program can’t be shown to improve safety, it ought to be stopped.”