This month, red light cameras are coming to Jacksonville. For years, Florida state law neither allowed not prohibited red light cameras until July 2010, when a law allowed installation on state-owned rights of way. Jacksonville approved the cameras in December 2007, and the cameras will be in place and operating by the end of this month.
Redflex Traffic Systems of Arizona are installing and will operate 25 cameras on 18 intersections that police have identified as dangerous. Jacksonville city officials believe the red light cameras will improve traffic safety by avoiding T-bone crashes by drivers trying to beat the lights. The locations include multiple intersections on Atlantic Boulevard, San Jose Boulevard, Beach Boulevard, Blanding Boulevard and Southside Boulevard. All of these intersections are high frequency locations. Once the cameras are operational, motorists will have a 30-day period where only warning citatn are issued for violations. After that, motorists face a $158 fine for running a red light or illegal turning left on red. A motorist who doesn’t pay within 30 ays will see the fine go up to $262.00. The link below shows where the red light cameras will be located in Jacksonville.
I am hopeful that the cameras will encourage drivers to drive more cautiously though I am concerned the cameras will cause people to slam on their brakes the instant a light turns yellow. That could easily cause the car behind them to run into them, so don’t ride someone’s bumper. Studies regarding the effectiveness of the cameras are mixed. A 2008 University of South Florida study found that red light cameras actually INCREASE accidents because drivers are more likely to come to a sudden stop, causing read-end collisions. But the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety claims that national studies have found a 20 percent decrease in the most dangerous crashes, like T-bone or head on collisions, and only a slight increase in rear-end collisions.
Regardless, be safe and be aware!