After Camera Repeal, Houston Leads Nation In ‘Red-Light Runner’ Fatalities

It’s likely been a suspicion to residents that Houston has some of the nation’s worst drivers.  As a flat city with several incredibly wide streets, some motorists like to pretend that every thruway is their own personal drag strip.  Sadly, this wild accusation may not be too far from reality, as Katy Fowler of the Sun Times Network reports…

According to the National Coalition for Safer Roads, Houston is the nation’s most dangerous city for red-light running.

From 2004 to 2013, 181 people were killed in Houston as the result of someone running a red light, according to the NCSR report.

In the past year, several Texas cities have installed red light cameras to discourage motorists from running red lights, but the efficacy of red light cameras is iffy.

After a successful petition led in part by attorney (now At-Large City Council Member) Michael Kubosh, Houston voters repealed use of the cameras by a decisive margin.

But new Houston city data provides evidence to strengthen the case for the use of cameras, and may even encourage their use across the nation.  Here’s more on that from Angie Schmitt from StreetsBlog USA

 

The HPD data contrasted crash figures from 2006 to 2010 — when the cameras were in operation — and from 2010 to 2014, after they were banned and removed. At the intersections that formerly had cameras, fatal crashes jumped 30 percent. Meanwhile, total crashes were up 116 percent. And DWI crashes nearly tripled, increasing by 186 percent.

Statistics like these should alarm anyone, even those that may have originally supported the repeal of red light cameras.  As other Texas cities have done, maybe it is time for Houston to re-visit this issue.  No matter the inconvenience, if these cameras save lives and critical damage from additional accidents, they might be worth the time and effort to be restored.

red light cameras

(photo credit:  On the Beat Blog

 

 

 

3 thoughts on “After Camera Repeal, Houston Leads Nation In ‘Red-Light Runner’ Fatalities”

  1. Come now everyone, we can’t screw up the republican utopia that is Houston, TX by doing something that would save lives. What a mess the state of Texas is. I’ve lived here since 1982 with the exception of a move out of state from 2004 thru 2011. I never dreamed how f–ked up this state would become while living in Nebraska for 7 years. Wish I could convince my kids to move out of this hell hole so I could leave as well. The only reason I am here is because I want to be close to my kids and grand kids. I have tried to have a positive attitude about Texas, I’ve registered people to vote, done my share of block walking to talk to other Texans about the importance of voting, but it seems no one cares to try any longer to make life better for everyone. This state is a lost cause if Democrats and Progressive minded folks can’t find a way to get people to vote these f’ing republicans out of office. Are people just that ignorant that they will continue voting for the party that makes their lives harder? Seems the answer is yes…..

  2. Yes, but look at the dates:
    From 2004 to 2013, 181 people were killed in Houston as the result of someone running a red light, according to the NCSR report.

    and you will see that the cameras were on during much of that period.

    The cameras shouldn’t return. They are like putting a band aid on cancer.

  3. More to the point these statistics are confusing

    The HPD data contrasted crash figures from 2006 to 2010 — when the cameras were in operation — and from 2010 to 2014, after they were banned and removed. At the intersections that formerly had cameras, fatal crashes jumped 30 percent. Meanwhile, total crashes were up 116 percent. And DWI crashes nearly tripled, increasing by 186 percent.

    Is the 116% increase in total crashes referring to total crashes in Houston? Or total crashes at the intersections that formerly had cameras? In any case, are the increased crashes due to other factors, such as more traffic, confusing signage, road construction, poorly designed intersections. That is to say, other than the absence of cameras, there may have been other changes at the intersections. And then, the statistics say that DWI crashes nearly tripled. Again, is this a city-wide increase or only at the intersections that had the cameras? Is the removal of the cameras causing more drunk drivers? Could it be all of the brew pubs, wine bars, restaurants and other alcohol purveyors causing this increase.

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