Will red-light cameras get the green-light?

By Lakecia Shockley - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - email

LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - The days of red-light cameras could be coming to an end. Another bill in the Texas House would prevent cities from getting the cameras after June first and existing cameras would go away after their service contract ends.

While some may be glad to see the back of the cameras, others want to keep them around. When they take your picture, it's not one you would hang on the wall for all to see.

"No,no, no," said Diane Wofford. "Because the thing about it is, they don't do right!!! 'Cause...when you go under that green light they'll turn yellow right away. Then you get there stuck and you out of ticket money!"

They help catch "red-light runners" in the act, and that's why Longview Police Chief J.B. McCaleb says the red light cameras need to stay.

"We have seen a decrease of 45 percent of accidents at our intersections, and I think that can be directly attributed to our cameras," said McCaleb. "So, it's made our city in my opinion safer!"

Chief McCaleb said the cameras don't cost Longview tax payers any money, nor does the city make money off the fines .

"It doesn't go on a person's driving record or affect there insurance, and the penalty for it is approximately a third of what a traffic citation would be," explained McCaleb. "So, in my opinion, they've been a win, win situation."

"[A] $75.00 dollar ticket is nothing compared to like losing your life," exclaimed Blake Tucker. "So, what would happen if the cameras were taken away?"

"I would expect that the accidents would return to the numbers before which 45 percent over two years is about 600 accidents in our city," said McCaleb.

And how would canning the cameras affect drivers?

"People will be less concerned about getting a ticket," said Kasie Smith, a Dallas resident. "People will run the light but I think overall it will have a better effect on people paying attention and stopping."

"I actually agree with keeping them in," exclaimed Tucker. "Makes you more cautious, you know, they're there so it makes you slow down."

The House has passed the bill and it goes to the Senate for approval on Monday.

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