New York – Public safety activists are in an uproar about an ongoing investigation that shows an increased accident with injuries risk at intersections equipped with red-light cameras. Lawmakers and citizens alike have expressed concerns regarding the dangerous condition created by these traffic light cameras. They note that some of the traffic signals have faster-than-normal yellow lights and confusing signals, creating a risk for injury due to car accidents that inevitably follow. In the meantime, Suffolk County officials claim that the camera program is fine and plan to continue with it, despite the public safety concerns involved. Opponents question why the program isn’t suspended until they, at least, investigate the increased car crash concerns. They explain that this would allow the time to safely look into the issues and prevent injury or wrongful death accidents. One theory as to why there is an increased accident risk at these intersections revolves around concerned motorists who become afraid of getting a ticket, instead of remaining focused on driving safely. Experts say that drivers may needlessly brake too soon or too quickly, leading to a rear-end collision. Others may become a distracted driver when looking at the camera instead of the road.
Some community activists in New York have claimed that the local county government is simply being greedy and unwilling to give up the revenue that they receive from traffic tickets. The fines associated with these tickets goes to the government’s coffers and is shared with the company that installed and maintains the cameras. This creates a possible incentive for some politicians to keep the cameras functioning even in light of the risk of injury or death. However, this may actually lead to increased personal injury lawsuits, which would be much more costly if lawmakers neglect to deal with the hazardous condition that they’ve created. Motor vehicle accident victims are encouraged to seek legal advice from a top injury lawyer to determine their rights. You can see a video and read more about the controversial traffic light program and investigation here.
Illustrative Photo Credit: Dave Dugdale, www.rentvine.com [License]