Tickets are no longer being mailed based on evidence created by freeway speed cameras in the state of Arizona. After a year-long campaign against the devices, activists from the group CameraFraud.com succeeded in convincing Governor Jan Brewer (R) to end the photo enforcement contract that her predecessor, Janet Napolitano (D) signed. As a result, the cameras were remotely shut down at 12:00am today.
Tag: Speed Camera
According to AZfamily.com, Arizona’s controversial freeway speed cameras will come down this week, as a result of governor Jan Brewer’s decision to not renew the state’s contract with Redflex. In addition to public opposition to the cameras, a lack of revenue flowing to the state appears to have been a factor in the decision to shut down the cameras. Apparently, the cameras generated over 7,000 tickets in their first year of operations, but because so many motorists simply ignored the tickets and the state didn’t have enough process servers, only about $30m of the estimated $90m in fines that should have been generated by those tickets was actually paid to the state. Arizona’s freeway speed cameras should be deactivated by this Friday.
The TaxPayers’ Alliance and Drivers’ Alliance last week calculated that UK speed cameras issued £87,368,227 (US $131,256,380) worth of tickets in fiscal 2009 without any demonstrable safety benefit. Since speed cameras were first installed on British roads in 1991, the roads became more dangerous than they would have been without photo enforcement, according to the report.
At least four of the country’s top rental car firms sell information on their customers to a photo enforcement firm. American Traffic Solutions and its subsidiary, ATS Processing Services, signed contracts through which Avis, Budget, Hertz and Advantage agreed to hand over information on renters so that ATS can collect extra money on photo tickets.
The group CameraFraud.com announced yesterday that 127,000 Arizona voters had made it clear that they want voters decide the future of automated enforcement in the state. The figure fell short by about ten percent of the number legally required to force a measure onto the ballot against the will of lawmakers. Initiative proponents see this as a merely temporary setback. Arizonans Against Photo Radar Chairman Shawn Dow believes that his group is stronger than ever and will be able to flex its political muscle to force change in the state.
The South Carolina House of Representatives voted Thursday to make the state’s ban on photo radar explicit. In 2006, the office of the attorney general issued an opinion stating automated ticketing conflicted with state law, but Ridgeland officials decided to ignore the ruling and operate a speed camera van on Interstate 95. The town of 2500 wants to deploy cameras to ticket out-of-state drivers as they pass through the seven-mile stretch within the town’s limits.
The Orange County, California Superior Court is making it difficult for Santa Ana to turn a profit on its red light camera program. From November 2009 to February 2010, the city lost a total of $145,414 on automated ticketing, meaning the city’s Australian camera operator, Redflex Traffic Systems, is walking away with $400,000 in general taxpayer money every year. The nearby city of Anaheim, which has nearly the same population, made a profit of $41,584 from red light running tickets over the same period. Anaheim not only has no red light cameras, a public referendum has been set to ban them for good in November.
A federal judge on Thursday sharply criticized the legal filings of an Australian photo enforcement vendor less than two weeks before a jury trial was scheduled to begin. Redflex Traffic Systems is being sued by its Arizona-based rival, American Traffic Solutions (ATS), on the grounds that the Melbourne-based firm won the recently canceled statewide speed camera contract with the Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS) by allegedly lying about the certification of its equipment. If it loses, Redflex could be forced to pay its rival millions in potential damages for lost business. Already, the company’s overall legal defense bill has reached $6.2 million for the past year.
Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell (R) signed into law last week a proposal that would create an entirely new form of automated ticketing machine, an “airport business” camera. The move followed his approval last month of legislation designed specifically to revive his state’s moribund red light camera program.
Although independent studies have shown a link between the use of photo enforcement equipment and a statistically significant increase in the number of collisions, opponents of photo radar have produced few concrete examples of these incidents. In Arizona, the group CameraFraud.com has begun using freedom of information laws to get its hands on examples of accidents that would not have happened but for the presence of a speed camera van (view studies).