Editorial: Red-light cameras seem to have a different purpose in Bakersfield, CA (written by NMAF’s James C. Walker)

I agree it is way past time to study the effectiveness of red-light cameras. And if the studies are done by truly unbiased groups like investigative reporters or neutral academics, the findings frequently come out that the cameras are neutral to safety or cause higher total crash rates.

The drivers that cause the dangerous t-bone crashes and dramatic near misses that the for-profit cameras like to show in videos are the ones that enter the intersections several seconds after the lights have been red. These drivers never recognized they were approaching red lights until it’s too late because they were heavily distracted by something — DUI, in medical distress, under the influence of legal or illegal drugs or some other reason. Sending those drivers a $500 bill in the mail some weeks later will NOT prevent those violations.