Professor: Red light cameras: Moneymakers that don't prevent accidents

The City of Wilmington promised red-light cameras would improve safety, but are they just racking up revenue?

A News Journal investigation found that red-light cameras aren't at intersections with higher numbers of signal-related crashes, and city officials aren't even sure whether they reduce dangerous collisions.

Rajiv Shah, professor at The University of Illinois studies video surveillance issues and tells WDEL red-light cameras don't reduce accidents anywhere in the nation.

"I think if you look at the history of it, you'll see that this was really driven by these contractors that wanted to come in and promise the city revenue," says Shah.

City red-light cameras have reportedly resulted in almost $16 million in fines since 2008.

"If the city had to pay for red-light camera systems, the millions of dollars that they would cost, instead of receiving revenue, I don't think that we would have them," Shah says.

Copyright © Dec 20, 2014, WDEL/Delmarva Broadcasting Company. All Rights Reserved.
Advanced permission from Delmarva Broadcasting Company required for publication or rebroadcast.