San Rafael Giving Up On Traffic Cameras That Catch Red-Light Runners

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20141231_110118 Jeffrey Schaub
Jeffrey Schaub is a Bay Area broadcast news veteran. From 1990 to ...
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SAN RAFAEL (KCBS)— The City of San Rafael is calling it quits on a five-year program to snapshot drivers who run red lights because police say it didn’t make much of a safety impact.

Police spokesperson Margo Rohrbacher said the contract with Redflex Traffic Systems Inc. won’t be renewed at the end of the month because the technology hasn’t resulted in an increase in traffic safety.

The red-light cameras along busy Irwin Street at Third Street were supposed to slow down drivers, cut down on accidents and make life safer for bicyclists, but it didn’t exactly work out that way.

“Police department staff assessed the effectiveness of the program and it was determined that accident reduction at that location was just slightly reduced,” Rohrbacher said.

At a cost of $11,800 a month, the city has said to close the lenses. Overall, Rohrbacher said she thinks drivers approaching the lights do slow down.

“We think this is an indication that drivers are aware of the red-light camera intersection.”

In response, the city may increase police patrols along Irwin Street, but they join the likes of Redwood City, Hayward, Belmont and even Los Angeles by deciding to do away traffic cameras.

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