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Thread: No Evidence Chicago Red Light Cameras Based on Safety -- System Made $71 Million

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    No Evidence Chicago Red Light Cameras Based on Safety -- System Made $71 Million

    Contrary to its claims, the City of Chicago’s red light cameras are not based on safety, according to an Inspector General (IG) audit of the program that brought in more than $71 million in revenue for the city last year.

    The audit, released on May 14, sought to determine if the city’s 384 red light cameras were installed based on the Chicago Department of Transportation’s (CDOT) “stated primary criterion of reducing angle crashes to increase safety.”

    The IG found no evidence to support the city’s rationale for the program, which is to “increase safety on Chicago streets.”

    “CDOT was unable to substantiate its claims that the City chose to install red light cameras at intersections with the highest angle crash rates in order to increase safety,” the IG said. “Neither do we know, from the information provided by CDOT, why cameras in locations with no recent angle crashes have not been relocated, nor what the City’s rationale is for the continued operation of any individual camera at any individual location.”

    The IG also found it “troubling” that the CDOT could not provide any documentation as to how they chose intersections to place red light cameras and why cameras remain at intersections that have reported no accidents.

    “If the intent of the [Red Light Camera] RLC program is to increase safety and reduce the number of dangerous angle crashes, it is troubling that CDOT cannot produce documentation or an analysis demonstrating how each camera location was chosen, including all of those currently in operation, was chosen,” the audit said.

    The program issued 612,278 tickets in 2012, and generated revenue totaling $71,943,053.00.
    No Evidence Chicago Red Light Cameras Based on Safety -- System Made $71 Million Last Year | CNS News

    more from the ig:

    there is "little evidence that the overarching program strategy, guidelines, or appropriate metrics are being used to ensure the RLC program is being executed to the best benefit of the city or the general public”

    there is a “lack of basic record keeping for a program that costs tens of millions of dollars a year and generates tens of millions more in revenue"

    those ticketed are charged $100 each

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    Re: No Evidence Chicago Red Light Cameras Based on Safety -- System Made $71 Million

    Quote Originally Posted by The Prof View Post
    No Evidence Chicago Red Light Cameras Based on Safety -- System Made $71 Million Last Year | CNS News

    more from the ig:

    there is "little evidence that the overarching program strategy, guidelines, or appropriate metrics are being used to ensure the RLC program is being executed to the best benefit of the city or the general public”

    there is a “lack of basic record keeping for a program that costs tens of millions of dollars a year and generates tens of millions more in revenue"

    those ticketed are charged $100 each
    I have absolutely no problem with red-light cameras. If it's producing positive cash flow, that's good enough for me.
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    Re: No Evidence Chicago Red Light Cameras Based on Safety -- System Made $71 Million

    Well, it really doesn't need to be based on safety, a reminder that one does not blow red lights without penalty is justification enough. The only quibble I'd have with the program is if it were being used for tracking unrelated to traffic offenders. It made money? Good thing in my book, that means they're doing their job correctly and a whole lot of ****ty drivers have been reminded of how to drive correctly.

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    Re: No Evidence Chicago Red Light Cameras Based on Safety -- System Made $71 Million

    Quote Originally Posted by clownboy View Post
    Well, it really doesn't need to be based on safety, a reminder that one does not blow red lights without penalty is justification enough. The only quibble I'd have with the program is if it were being used for tracking unrelated to traffic offenders. It made money? Good thing in my book, that means they're doing their job correctly and a whole lot of ****ty drivers have been reminded of how to drive correctly.
    I vaguely recall some indications that they might actually increase accidents, because people freak out when the light turns yellow and slam on the breaks when they might otherwise have safely gone through the intersection during the switchover.
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    Re: No Evidence Chicago Red Light Cameras Based on Safety -- System Made $71 Million

    Quote Originally Posted by Deuce View Post
    I vaguely recall some indications that they might actually increase accidents, because people freak out when the light turns yellow and slam on the breaks when they might otherwise have safely gone through the intersection during the switchover.
    Sounds like the same logic people used when wearing seat belts became law.

    Slamming on one's breaks should never cause an accident from the rear. If one doesn't recognize "a stale green light" as they're approaching it? They need more driver's training.
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    Re: No Evidence Chicago Red Light Cameras Based on Safety -- System Made $71 Million

    Just one more reason on the long list of reasons Rahm Emanuel is a horrible mayor who needs to go. Not only do his crappy plans not work, he then lies about them working. He should have stayed at the White House as Chief of Staff. He's better suited for implementing other people's plans, then doing anything on his own.

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    Re: No Evidence Chicago Red Light Cameras Based on Safety -- System Made $71 Million

    It is a revenue thing. if they wanted these cameras to stop people from running red lights they would be gigantic so people would see them there. When people know they are being monitored they obey the laws. making cameras smaller and not letting people know they are there just means people will keep on driving like idiots, which is what the town wants so it will make money on them. You should not be running red lights, so I am fine with a fairly inexpensive thing that will actually earn it's price back through tickets. As long as they are accurate and work well and do not hit people who don't run red lights i am ok with it. Just do not run red lights and none of this concerns you. I just think they need to be larger so everyone knows they are there.

    Now if you want to be bothered by evil monitoring of your driving for fun and profit progressive has a little device that plugs into your car and ticks up your insurance rates for doing things like slamming on your breaks and swerving. Now that is a dangerous device which encourages dangerous driving.

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    Re: No Evidence Chicago Red Light Cameras Based on Safety -- System Made $71 Million

    Quote Originally Posted by tererun View Post
    It is a revenue thing. if they wanted these cameras to stop people from running red lights they would be gigantic so people would see them there. When people know they are being monitored they obey the laws. making cameras smaller and not letting people know they are there just means people will keep on driving like idiots, which is what the town wants so it will make money on them. You should not be running red lights, so I am fine with a fairly inexpensive thing that will actually earn it's price back through tickets. As long as they are accurate and work well and do not hit people who don't run red lights i am ok with it. Just do not run red lights and none of this concerns you. I just think they need to be larger so everyone knows they are there.

    Now if you want to be bothered by evil monitoring of your driving for fun and profit progressive has a little device that plugs into your car and ticks up your insurance rates for doing things like slamming on your breaks and swerving. Now that is a dangerous device which encourages dangerous driving.
    I think in Illinois every intersection monitored has signs that warn drivers. There's little excuse.
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    Re: No Evidence Chicago Red Light Cameras Based on Safety -- System Made $71 Million

    they're doing their job correctly
    from the ig's audit:

    cdot's “stated primary criterion is reducing angle crashes to increase safety”

    the ig found no evidence to support the city’s rationale for the program, which is to “increase safety on chicago streets”

    “cdot was unable to substantiate its claims that the city chose to install red light cameras at intersections with the highest angle crash rates in order to increase safety”

    "neither do we know, from the information provided by cdot why cameras in locations with no recent angle crashes have not been relocated, nor what the city’s rationale is for the continued operation of any individual camera at any individual location”

    the ig also found it “troubling” that the cdot could not provide any documentation as to how they chose intersections to place red light cameras and why cameras remain at intersections that have reported no accidents"

    “if the intent of the RLC program is to increase safety and reduce the number of dangerous angle crashes, it is troubling that cdot cannot produce documentation or an analysis demonstrating how each camera location, including all of those currently in operation, was chosen”

    the audit said it “uncovered little evidence that the overarching program strategy, guidelines, or appropriate metrics are being used to ensure the RLC program is being executed to the best benefit of the city or the general public”

    furthermore, there is a “lack of basic record keeping for a program that costs tens of millions of dollars a year and generates tens of millions more in revenue”

    the red light camera program was “designed to increase safety on chicago streets,” and the city says it selects locations based on crash data, read the report

    however, the ig audit revealed that 42% of the intersections with cameras were not on the city’s “top 205 angle crash rate” list of the most dangerous driving intersections in chicago

    chicago has only relocated 10 cameras since 2003, the cdot is supposed to continually evaluate cameras to be relocated to more dangerous crossroads but the ig did not find evidence of the department doing that

    “cameras installed years ago are still in operation today, and the department cannot produce documentation demonstrating how each camera location was chosen or why cameras in locations with no recent angle crashes have not been relocated pursuant to cdot’s relocation criteria”

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    Re: No Evidence Chicago Red Light Cameras Based on Safety -- System Made $71 Million

    Quote Originally Posted by Deuce View Post
    I vaguely recall some indications that they might actually increase accidents, because people freak out when the light turns yellow and slam on the breaks when they might otherwise have safely gone through the intersection during the switchover.
    That's a general problem with new drivers and people new to an area. I think the fact they are catching so many indicates there was a larger problem.

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