Red-light cameras flawed

Daily Record, New Jersey: It’s been nearly a year since we last came out against red-light cameras for Morris Township.

Now that the state Department of Transportation has approved a new plan for the township’s participation in an ongoing pilot program, we thought it worth repeating our opinion.

Earlier this week, the Daily Record reported that Morris Township had scrapped its oft-delayed plan to install the cameras at Columbia Road and Normandy Parkway, and last week won approval to put them elsewhere: Columbia Turnpike and Park Avenue.

To recap: Red-light cameras ticket not drivers, but rather the owners of vehicles photographed running a red light. If you own a car, but aren’t driving when the photo is snapped, there may be little you can do. A summons arrives in the mail — how do you challenge that in court?

Also, studies have shown that red-light cameras can lead to more collisions, as drivers slam on their brakes when the light turns yellow for fear of being snapped. Then there’s the whole Big Brother slippery slope.

We understand that New Jersey communities are strapped for cash, and are looking for new ways to generate revenue. That’s why the red-light camera program has become attractive.

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