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Should Upper Dublin Township Have Red Light Cameras?

The state legislature passed a bill to allow red light cameras in Montgomery, Chester, Delaware and Bucks counties.

According to a release issued by AAA MId-Atlantic, the Pennsylvania legislature is wrapping up its session with a bill to allow red light cameras in the Philadelphia suburbs and in Pittsburgh. 

House Bill 254 passed handily in the state Senate on Friday, June 29, with 34 yeas and only 15 nays and if signed into law by Gov. Corbett, would reauthorize the red light camera program in Philadelphia through July 2017, but would also allow for the cameras to be used in Montgomery, Chester, Delaware and Bucks counties as well as Pittsburgh.

Municipalities eligible for the red light cameras would have to exceed 20,000 residents and have full-time police forces accredited by the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association. That makes Upper Dublin Township eligible for the cameras.

Details of the law:

  • Fines would be set at $100 (unless a lower amount is approved by the municipality.)
  • The violation would not carry any points. 
  • The legislation prohibits frontal photographs of vehicles.
  • The cameras only can be used for traffic enforcement, not surveillance. 

Other Montgomery County communities that are eligible for cameras include Abington, Horsham, Lower Merion, Lower Providence, Montgomery, Upper Dublin and Upper Merion.

AAA says it strongly supports the same protections for citizens that are provided in Philadelphia’s red light camera program including:

  • Posted warning signs telling motorists that red light cameras are present.
  • Camera vendors are paid a flat amount, not related to number of citations issued.
  • PennDOT has sole responsibility for approving intersections, and the camera locations are based solely on crash data, not traffic volume.
  • Yellow light timing cannot be arbitrarily changed.
  • Revenue goes to Pennsylvania’s Motor License Fund for safety and mobility projects throughout the state, not just the local jurisdiction.

So what do we think? Should Upper Dublin Township have red light cameras? Let us know what you think in the comment section.

Gil Skalski July 02, 2012 at 03:19 PM
Other States have tried this only having to submit to their constituents wishes and repeal the laws. They seem to cause more traffic accidents and turn into a money grab situation by the township and the companies that are installing and operating the cameras. It seems like more good can be done by adding an additional second or two to the yellow light than having a company that only sees economic gain in the towns using it and no real concern about safety only the money they can harvest.
Curmudgeon July 02, 2012 at 03:52 PM
According to a KYW report, at least 50% of the cameras in Phila. ae not working. Now residents will have to go to the police station to fight tickets given by these cameras. NOT FOR SURVEILENCE??? Not until they decide to use them for same. Big Brother is waching over us. Tell your Commisioners NO!!!
tex July 02, 2012 at 04:44 PM
The only ones who should be opposed to the cameras are those that run red lights. If you don't run red lights, what's the worry?
Concerned Citizen July 02, 2012 at 07:15 PM
Revenue generation pure and simple. I have always admired UDPD for not being abusive when it comes to traffic enforcement like so many areas in PA have become. I have lived here for over 20 years and believe that if you drive normally you wont have any encounters with the law. I have also visited enough areas in PA were the most minor infractions are ticketed, not out of a call for safety but for increased revenue. This is out right theft under the guise of public safety. I hope that Corbett doesn't sign this into law but the odds of that are slim as he has vowed not to raise "taxes" and is seeking other "means" of revenue generation.
Automotive Legal Service - Terry Shaw July 02, 2012 at 10:27 PM
Being involved in accident reconstruction, I can accurately state, after cell phones (all usages), running red lights is next on the list of dangerous vehicle drivers non-conformaties. You cannot fine drivers enough to even begin to compensate the victims families for a lifetime of pain and financial upheaval for mear seconds of the drivers selfish actions. Today many intersection and local roadway accidents are cleaned up before drivers are aware that at that spot on the roadway, containing just some colored shards of glass, just 30 minutes before, precious lives were lost or promising futures exchanged for life long handicapped existence. We are already paying for this type of driving with higher insurance, local and state taxes and the cost of increased municipal traffic control. The best part of fining the offenders is they get points and when the courts get done (with those that show up) the insurers raise the offenders risk factors (which don't go away in 3 years). If you drive alot, you experience more potential roadway events that will endanger you or cause receipt of a camera citation. The camera citations are not fool proof (mutiple vehicles passing others) but at least you have an opportunity to be heard (usually a split the cost - no points outcome)
Curmudgeon July 03, 2012 at 01:24 AM
The cameras stop accidents?? Now that's a stretch. Distractions of all kinds, plain old mistakes cause most accidents. That's why they're call accidents, they're not called on purpose!!
tex July 03, 2012 at 12:19 PM
Do you really believe that running red lights is only because of "accidents"? Sorry--that's just not true. How many people speed up at the sight of a yellow light, instead of slow down?
Lee July 03, 2012 at 01:20 PM
Because this kind of monitoring can be babysteps for monitoring more than traffic, not to sound like a tin hat. :) Gil's comment above is spot on, because Tex you are paying for all of this monitoring via your tax dollars.
Terry Shaw July 08, 2012 at 06:10 PM
Running red lights are not because of accidents, running red lights is one of the major causes of intersection collisions. Cameras make the risk you take by running a red light much higher because even if you don't hit someone you will more than likely get an expensive moving violation 3/4 point ticket
Bill July 16, 2012 at 03:50 AM
‘Costing…Taxpayers Money’: Council Votes Out Red-Light Traffic Cameras After 2 Years This article has links embedded such as "Fla Judge declares camera lights unconstitutional" http://www.theblaze.com/stories/council-votes-out-these-red-light-traffic-cameras-after-2-years-but-why/

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