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Spartan

Traffic Cameras for SC's largest cities

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Spartan    682

I heard on WVOC today the legislature has approved a bill that would allow cities over 20,000 to install traffic cameras that could be used to ticket offenders. The idea of 20,000 came about because there was a fear that small towns would use them to create speed traps.

Cities over 20,000

  • Aiken

  • Anderson

  • Charleston

  • Columbia

  • Florence

  • Goose Creek

  • Greenville

  • Greenwood

  • Hilton Head Island

  • Mount Pleasant

  • Myrtle Beach

  • North Charleston

  • Rock Hill

  • Spartanburg

  • Summerville

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jfl25    0

I heard about this a while back, but i was hoping that it wouldn't happen.It's not that i'm against technology,but i don't see how it can work properly. What happens if someone borrows your car or something.I think this is a big mistake.

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Skyliner    38

This kind of technology in the hands of the wrong person would be terrible. I also believe it's crazy to use this as a substitute for real police officers. I say spend that money on an increase in salary for our cities' bravest and sadly underpayed workers. :)

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Jerseyman4    0

Another way big brother can extract more tax revenue from motorists. AT LEAST there arent any private contractors involved trying to make profit. Just recently, High Point turned off their red light cameras because it was runned by private contractors which for example 80% of the profits went to Jim Bob, 20% went to the city. In short, a guilford county judge found the private contractors going into traffic enforcement by snapping photos and slapping us $50 dollar fines then making profit off it was unconsitutional which the judge ordered the money to go to the schools. Well, Jim Bob cant make money, the city cant make money so the red light cameras are now turned off in High Point. :rofl:

Heres the link below about it:

http://abclocal.go.com/wtvd/news/022805_AP...dlightcams.html

High Point Disconnects Red Light Cameras

By The Associated Press

(02/28/05 -- HIGH POINT)

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JW2    0

All traffic cameras are good for is generating revenue. New studies have shown that they actually CAUSE more accidents.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/artic...-2005Feb17.html

a few excerpts:

Last summer, civil engineering professor Nicholas Garber and his colleagues received a query from Richmond: Could the researchers figure out, quickly, whether red light cameras have had any effect on car crashes?

Garber, who teaches at the University of Virginia, now finds himself in the middle of a political tussle over public policy and privacy that could result today in the House of Delegates' dismantling of efforts to shoot pictures of -- and fine -- red light runners from Fairfax County to Virginia Beach.

......

Garber studied the best data available, from Fairfax County, and documented what for many is a counterintuitive finding: that the use of cameras at intersections resulted in more injuries. That's because while crashes from the side went down, rear-end accidents went up. His results, consistent with those of some other studies across the country, have poured fresh fuel onto the heated cost-and-benefit debate on the cameras in Virginia.

......

They confirmed what many, though not all, previous studies had found: Right-angle crashes decrease, and rear-end ones go up, once the cameras are installed. That is largely because more accidents at camera locations occur as motorists abruptly stop before the intersections and fewer people cause accidents by speeding into intersections on the red.

A big THUMBS DOWN on this one.

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gs3    26

More big brother! Major thumbs down!

Spend the money that would be spent on these cameras on something that actually benefits taxpayers (ie: repave roads, schools, high speed rail, etc).

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monsoon    0

Yeah the Virginia Legislature cited this study to pass a bill that will turn off all cameras in that state this summer.

In Charlotte, we have had these cameras for several years and local studies have indicated a big drop off in accidents at the intersections where they are installed. My feeling is that if you don't try to beat the light then you won't get dinged. Several of my friends who dont believe in stopping until the cars start moving in the other direction have gotten the envelope in the mail with the photo of their vehicle running the light and a $50 fine. These fines have cooled them down a bit which I think is a good thing.

BTW, expect this in the future. Charlotte has just installed radar cameras and they are mobile too. The police will setup one of these mobile units on the side of the road and when you least expect it, BAM. A letter in mail saying you were speeding on so & so road and another $50 fine. LOL

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Skyliner    38

I've been wondering how long before we would see those being used. It's just another way they can avoid paying troopers what they deserve, IMO. :)

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Spartan    682

BTW, expect this in the future.  Charlotte has just installed radar cameras and they are mobile too.  The police will setup one of these mobile units on the side of the road and when you least expect it, BAM.  A letter in mail saying you were speeding on so & so road and another $50 fine.  LOL

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

They will do anything to make a buck. What are you supposed to do if the flow of traffic is 50, and the speed limit is say... 40? I guess everyone would get a ticket. Who doesn't go 5mph over the speed limit on a regular basis? I know that I would quit driving pretty quick after I got a few of those. That is a messed up way to encourage mass transit.

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Jerseyman4    0

They will do anything to make a buck. What are you supposed to do if the flow of traffic is 50, and the speed limit is say... 40? I guess everyone would get a ticket. Who doesn't go 5mph over the speed limit on a regular basis? I know that I would quit driving pretty quick after I got a few of those. That is a messed up way to encourage mass transit.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

According to when i was watching WSOC-TV, if you go one or two over, they dont give you a ticket from the mobile camera vans. I dont know about " wolfpacking " vehicles along a road if say "50 cars" get ticketed but according to Channel 9, if your going more than 5 to 7 over the speed limit, most likely, they will send you a $50 ticket. Charlotte is seriously a police city. while it cracks down on motorists breaking the law using technology, id rather get pulled over the old fashioned way and be written up a ticket than some dipcrap van photographing me for speeding or the cameras at intersections nailing me for a red light. *Knock on wood*, ive yet to see a letter in the mail from Billy Graham Parkway for speeding or red lights runned on US 301 in MD at the red light cameras. :D

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jfl25    0

I still don't see how this can hold up in court . All they get is your cars tag #, how can they make you pay they can't say for 100% that it was you driving the car. Has anyone taken this to court , or should i say to a jury trail.

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monsoon    0

When you get a fine from one of these things it isn't the same as getting a traffic citation from a policeman where you can go to court to contest it. Instead it is like a parking fine on your car. It doesn't matter who was driving the car but the owner has to pay. There are no insurance points either.

Of couse if you "obey the law" then there should be no problem. :P

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Jerseyman4    0

Speaking of the High Point cameras that were shut down recently, i was driving down High Point one day (back in January) and spotted a Fox 8 WGHP news van doing a story about the chance of the cameras being shut off at the intersection of North Main St (US 311) at eastchester/westchester and throughout the city. I have like 1500 photos on my computer by the way from the time i was down for the month. When i watched the 10pm news, i saw the story but didnt see my car passing through the intersection. By the way, i didnt run a red light there that day :P

DSC00251.jpg

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Some common sense is taking place in some members of our state's legislature on this issue. Here is today's P & C article about some people trying to block this bill that others are trying to pass. What REALLY bugs me is that Chas. city police actually support this idea. Are they nuts?!?!? :wacko: They obviously are stuck in their own little world and haven't paid attention to cities in NC, Georgia, and Florida that have done away with these cameras.

Police need to do what they are paid to do: use their own officers to track and pull over offenders of red lights and speeding!!!

Red-light bill spurs caution in Senate

Research sought on camera idea

COLUMBIA - A bill to allow cities to install red-light cameras at traffic intersections caught a yellow light in the Senate on Wednesday.

Lawmakers asked their staffs to research the bill further after Sen. Larry Grooms, R-Bonneau, and other opponents pointed out that some states have disbanded similar programs.

"I just question whether we are jumping on the Titanic after it hit the iceberg," said Sen. Chip Campsen, R-Isle of Palms.

The bill would allow cities of more than 20,000 population to use automated cameras at traffic lights to nab motorists running red lights. The cameras would capture an image of a vehicle's license tag. Fines would be capped at $100 and would not affect driving records or insurance rates.

Charleston, North Charleston, Mount Pleasant, Summerville and Goose Creek would qualify. More than 20 states and the District of Columbia use red-light cameras, though some, such as Virginia, have abandoned their programs...

...Maj. Jerome Taylor of the Charleston Police Department agrees. Police used traffic-monitoring cameras on U.S. Highway 17 to determine if red-light running was a serious problem. "We didn't collect any data, we just wanted to see," Taylor said. "And we saw that, yes, it was a problem."

Taylor said Chief Reuben Greenberg is pushing hard for the legislation. "A lot of places in the city, it is really hard to enforce," Taylor said. "I think Charleston is the ideal place (for cameras)."

While supporters contend cameras make intersections safer, opponents argue that they cause more accidents.

Grooms pointed to a study of red-light cameras in Greensboro, N.C., conducted by the Transportation Institute at North Carolina A&T State University. The 2004 study found cameras at intersections increased the overall rate of accidents...

Entire article

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