Using Red Light Cameras For Speed Enforcement Will Save Lives
Good news! The BC Government will upgrade red light cameras to catch speeders at dangerous intersections. This is a badly needed measure that will reduce crashes making intersections safer for people cycling, walking and driving.
Please write the Premier and ministers supporting this and other safety improvements. Encourage them to focus on reducing speeds at intersections where a lot of people are walking and cycling.
Even crashes at speeds of 50 km/h are likely to be fatal to those cycling and walking so the slower the better. If the speed limit is 50 km/h, 20 km/h over is 70 km/h. Still way to fast to avoid serious injuries or fatalities especially in crashes involving people walking and cycling. The Government should consider at least a small fine for even 5 km/h over the speed limit at intersections popular with people cycling and walking and even better, lower the speed limit to 30 km/h.
From the Vancouver Sun:
Data collected from B.C.’s 140 red-light camera locations between 2012 and 2016 shows that 120 million (17 per cent) of the nearly 700 million vehicles annually travelling through the intersections were speeding, with 1.5 million entering the intersections at 30 km/h or more over the limit.
“This is about slowing down the fastest drivers at intersections where we know that speed is a factor in causing accidents, so everyone on these busy corridors will be safer,” said Solicitor General Mike Farnworth.
The lack of speed enforcement is a rising concern for BC residents. It is precisely because of the lack of speed control enforcements that roadway fatal casualties have increased to 275 in British Columbia with as many as 94 fatal crashes in the Lower Mainland since 2011.
Fortunately, to-date, BC has over 140 automated intersection cameras, which has been crucial measure in providing safety for all road users. However, more lives could be saved if we follow UK's leading practice in targetted speed enforcements.
Attorney General Eby Eby states:
“These are fixed cameras, you can put up a big sign that says if you speed through this intersection at 20 kilometres an hour or more, you’re going to get a ticket guaranteed,”
Studies from the National Safety Camera Programme in the UK concluded that the installation of red light cameras resulted in 100 fewer fatalities per year and at least 4,230 fewer personal injury collisions. Overall, this program delivered enhanced results for road safety management as deaths and serious injuries were reduced by 42%.
The ICBC review estimated that the introduction of speed enforcements at the high-risk intersection camera (ISC) sites could reduce the frequency of crashes by 14%–25% and the severity of the crashes by 11%–45%. This could result in a cost savings of $89 million per year, which could be used to lower insurance costs.
Although many of the victims in the NSCP study were passengers, it is important to note that people walking and cycling are more vulnerable to the dangers of high motor vehicle speeds. If you want our government to implement a program as promising as the one in UK, please do not hesitate to inform our government.
Photo: Herald Sun
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