Illinois Red Light Cameras Source of Much Controversy
Since the installation of red light cameras began throughout Illinois, much debate has occurred over the effectiveness of these once heralded traffic control tools. A great deal of controversy surrounds the issuing of traffic tickets to motorists, and people have questioned whether the cameras are a safety device or a revenue generating resource for municipalities.
New Report Claims Clout Drives Camera Placement in Illinois
Despite the need for approval from the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) prior to installation of red light cameras, a recent investigation and report indicated the cameras were going up at intersections that did not meet the established threshold for monitoring. The investigation found that:
• More than 50 percent of intersections with cameras were rated among the safest by IDOT standards BEFORE the cameras were installed.
• IDOT frequently approved placement of cameras at intersections that did not meet its own established criteria.
• Nearly a quarter of the intersections granted cameras had not recorded a single red-light related accident in the three years prior to camera installation.
Much of findings supported complaints that the cameras were being used more for the generation of revenue, and not for the intended purpose of making dangerous intersections safer.
Other States Taking Another Look
Illinois motorists are not the only drivers receiving automated tickets, and other jurisdictions have begun reviewing the effectiveness and legality of the automated traffic control devices. Two very recent examples include:
• Lawmakers in Suffolk County, NY, are pushing for the suspension of that area’s red light camera program until data pertaining to accidents involving bicyclists and pedestrians was reviewed. Some officials were touting the cameras’ effectiveness for reducing incidents, but numbers involving bicycles and pedestrians were not included in the overall report.
• The Iowa Supreme Court is hearing a case involving the issuance of a ticket from an automated traffic camera. The petitioner claims the machines violate the due process and equal protection clauses of that state’s Constitution.
A handful of states have banned the use of automated red light and speeding cameras. Among those who have legislated against the use of such programs are New Jersey, South Carolina, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, and New Hampshire. Other states have placed limitations on the use and placement of these devices.
Seek the Help of an Experienced Joliet Speeding Ticket and Traffic Attorney
Whether you are ticketed as a result of an alleged red light camera offense or receive a citation while driving in Illinois, take time to consider all your options before going to court. Share your experience with a knowledgeable Will County traffic court lawyer and allow a legal professional who understands traffic law to guide your next steps. The Law Office of Jack L. Zaremba will present your defense and work on your behalf to fight tickets or reduce fines and other punishments handed down by the court.