Red-light cameras are installed throughout Fort Worth. They capture still images and video footage of drivers that run red lights. Once a driver’s license plate is identified, he or she will receive a citation and a notice to pay a civil penalty of $75 through the mail.
Many residents have expressed privacy concerns regarding the use of red light cameras. Activists have even petitioned to have the red light cameras in Fort Worth shut off earlier this year. However, they were unable to receive a sufficient number of signatures.
The pros and cons
While these devices may help prevent T-bone accidents at intersections, a new study shows an increase in rear-end accidents. The study, which examined 2015 crash data – with a primary focus on Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio – has deemed intersections with red light cameras the most dangerous. This is due to drivers stopping abruptly in order to avoid a citation, which can set off a chain reaction for other road users.
Houston saw an 18 percent increase in rear-end accidents at intersections with red light cameras. Since removing the cameras, the city has had 26 fewer accidents resulting in injuries at those intersections.
The report states that accidents can be caused by driver miscalculations, “The decision to stop or continue is a split-second decision. For example, knowledge of the cameras ... could lead some drivers’ first impulse (to) be to stop even when it would be safer to continue through the intersection.”
The trade-off isn’t easy. T-bone accidents can often result in serious and fatal injuries, and are often caused by drivers who run red lights. Rear-end accidents can also cause injury, but they are usually not as devastating.
However, the real issue doesn’t come down to the confusion caused by red light cameras. Drivers are expected to obey traffic laws and be prepared to stop for red lights, plain and simple. When they fail to do so, they put other road users in danger and should be held accountable.
Injured in a crash? An attorney can help
If you have been injured in a car accident in Fort Worth, the aftermath can be confusing – even frustrating. You may have sustained serious injuries that require extensive medical treatment and time away from work. That’s why you need an experienced and knowledgeable attorney on your side who knows how to handle the most complex car accidents. Contact attorney Coby L. Wooten today to learn how we can help you.