Local News

Raleigh Officials At Crossroads Over Traffic Cameras

Posted October 2, 2002

— The city of Raleigh is flashing the yellow light when it comes to cameras at intersections.

The cameras would be placed in 15 intersections in Raleigh, snapping photos of drivers who run red lights and sending them tickets in the mail.

Transportation officials hope the traffic cameras work as well in Raleigh as they have in other cities.

"It has been extremely effective in Greensboro and Charlotte specifically. Over the course of a three-year period, the accident rate has dropped as much as 60 percent in their intersections," said Mike Kennon, of the state Department of Transportation.

"It's a good idea. It's horrible in Raleigh with people going through red lights," motorist Amy Woods said.

According to recent statistics from 1998 to 2000 the intersections listed below had the following number of accidents:

  • Dawson Street and South Street, 52
  • Morgan Street and Wilmington Street, 43
  • Edenton Street and Person Street, 37
  • Hillsborough Street and McDowell Street, 36
  • Dawson Street and Morgan Street, 27
  • A City Council committee recommended a five-year contract with ACS, the same company that operates red-light cameras in Fayetteville, but some Raleigh leaders are lukewarm about the idea of someone watching over drivers.

    The council will ask ACS for a shorter contract that can be canceled if safety at the intersections does not improve. Council members who have seen the statistics say the cameras work.

    "The numbers range from 70 percent to 90 percent reduction of automobile accidents at the intersections. It does have a dramatic impact on folks who no longer run red lights," Councilman Phillip Isley said.


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