I realize that no amount of discussion or explanation on my part here is going to change the minds of individuals who refuse to see red light cameras (RLC) as anything more than government technology intruding into their daily lives. I respect their opinions, though we will forever disagree I guess.
However, a recent comment here from "Rock" prompted me to offer a further explanation into how the RLC process works. He wrote:
Officers are afforded tremendous discretion in their traffic enforcement activities. Having been there myself, we use a bit of common sense, a dose of compassion (really, we do), and the importance of enforcement to modify bad driver behavior when deciding whether to issue a traffic citation or a warning.
While it is true that an RLC does not afford the driver the opportunity to offer an explanation in person as to why they ran that red light (sometimes the reasons can be very creative and entertaining, but that's another post for another day), police officers who review the violations do employ discretion when deciding whether to issue a Notice of Violation or excuse the incident. In situations where it is a close call, the driver will more often than not be excused.
The vast majority of RLC events we have reviewed are clear cut violations of the law. Whether an officer was there to issue the driver a traffic citation in person or give a Notice of Violation via the mail, a citation/fine is warranted.
And if you are looking for a financial advantage to receiving an RLC violation, that will only cost you $125 versus a nearly $200 traffic ticket and points on your drivers license.
Something to think about...
- Asst Chief Bill LePere