Study finds red-light cameras reduce crashes

State Rep. Janet Adkins questions stats, supports a bill banning the cameras

By Scott Johnson - Reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The Arizona company that processes the red light violations for Clay County and dozens of other communities in Florida that have installed red-light cameras has released staggering statistics about how successful the cameras are at cutting down on accidents.

"The number of crashes, violations and fatalities have decreased since cities have been using red-light safety cameras," said Charles Territo of American Traffic Solutions.

But not everyone is buying American Traffic Solutions numbers, saying they're skewed. That includes State Rep. Janet Adkins, R-Nassau County, who supports banning the cameras. She doesn't trust the company's statistics.

"When you have such a small data sample, to say that it's due to red-light cameras, I believe it's disingenuous, and I believe it's fraud," said Adkins.

Adkins says she supports a bill being discussed in the legislature this year to ban the cameras.  She says she's heard from too many constituents who are getting the $158 citations in the mail, and they and can't afford them.

"I received an email from a constituent saying, 'How is it possible I receive a ticket, I didn't even go through a red light. (I) loan my car to someone and receive a $158 bill in the mail,'" said Adkins.

Adkins says one reason she didn't trust the company's numbers is because they showed decreases in crashes the year after there was a high number of accidents, so there was an unusually large drop.

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