Red light cameras have long been known to reduce the number of drivers who run red lights. These violations go down by about 40% according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Moreover, IIHS data shows that large cities with cameras see 21% fewer deaths from red light-running crashes than other large cities. Residents of Ohio should know about the controversy, though, that surrounds red light cameras.
The public has been supporting cameras less and less with the years, and as a result, more communities are either removing their cameras or struggling to implement them. In 2012, a total of 533 communities had installed these devices. By the middle of 2018, the number declined to 421.
Some cities are using cameras dishonestly to generate revenue. For example, Chicago set up the largest red light camera system in the U.S. back in 2014, but it simultaneously altered the duration of its yellow lights to the shortest allowable. This meant more drivers were caught running red lights; it also meant more drivers would brake hard to avoid a violation and wind up causing a rear-end collision instead.
This decline in cameras may be behind the rise in red light-running crash fatalities. The number rose 17% between 2012 and 2018. Another likely factor is the increasing number of vehicles on the road.
Whether drivers run a red light through recklessness or inattention, they should be held liable for any motor vehicle collisions they cause. If these collisions result in serious injuries and vehicle damage for the other side, it may lead the way for a personal injury claim. Victims, for their part, may want to hire a lawyer before filing their claim. If they contributed to a certain degree to the crash, whatever damages they recover will be lowered proportionally to that degree.