Tony O'Kane | Apr 7, 2009

In an effort to deter drivers from running red lights and speeding through intersections, the Victoria Police have installed an extra 30 red light cameras across much of Melbourne.

The new cameras will operate on existing red light camera sites, but will be permanent replacements for cameras that are currently operated on a rotating basis. They will also use a more streamlined digital image capturing system, which will offer servicability benefits over the antiquated wet-film cameras.

“The great advantage of red light cameras is that they allow for the offence to be enforced safely without putting our members in danger by following another vehicle through,” said Assistant Commissioner (Traffic) Ken Lay.

“Last year 28 people were killed as a result of side impact collisions at intersections, with 25 per cent of all serious injuries also caused this way.

“There were also over 4000 recorded collisions at intersections and a large percentage of these involved speed and motorists taking a gamble by running a red light."

In response to the thorny issue of cameras being used as revenue-raising devices, Lay said that the intent behind the red light cameras is not to generate money, but to deter drivers from breaking road rules.

“Police have no sympathy for the drivers losing money and demerit points due to their own stupidity, that’s reserved for the hundreds of families spending countless hours in hospital waiting rooms and rehabilitation centres because someone made a stupid decision,” he said.

“Do the crime, pay the fine – it is as simple as that. The cameras work to reduce road trauma and while that is the case police make no apology for using them.”

[Herald Sun]

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