Traffic and Red Light Cameras in St. Louis
Ryan Bradley | October 26, 2022 | Car Accident
If you have ever looked up at a traffic light and noticed a contraption connected to it, you may have been peering into a red light camera. Over the last several years, the number of red light and traffic cameras has dramatically increased in St. Louis and cities around the country.
If you want to know more about red light cameras or how they might affect your car accident case, contact a personal injury lawyer for more information.
What Are Traffic and Red Light Cameras?
Traffic and red light cameras are installed at busy intersections to capture traffic violations, such as running a red light or making an illegal turn. Traffic lights have built-in sensors that activate when a vehicle crosses the stop line into the intersection after the light has turned red.
The light’s camera is activated and captures video and photo evidence of the violation, including the following information:
- The driver’s license plate number
- The location
- Date and time of the incident
- The time elapsed under the red light
- The vehicle’s speed
- Images before and after the violation occurred
- A picture of the driver
Most red light cameras are operated by third-party companies that send any footage to relevant law enforcement agencies. These agencies use the footage to create traffic tickets and send them to violators. If uncontested, the tickets can result in fines and license points to offending drivers.
Are Red Light Cameras Legal in Missouri?
Yes, red light cameras are legal in Missouri. Red light cameras are controversial because they pose certain privacy challenges. Some claimants have litigated issues regarding such cameras in the state. Nonetheless, they still remain legal and are actively used in many communities throughout Missouri.
What Are the Benefits of Traffic Cameras?
One of the most significant benefits of traffic cameras and why they continue to stay around is that they help decrease car accidents. It is human nature to act differently if you know you are being recorded and may have to face the consequences of your actions.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) supports this notion. According to the IIHS, a 21% reduction in fatal red light running crashes occurred in large cities where cameras were installed. The rate of all types of fatal crashes at intersections with traffic control devices decreased by 14%.
In Missouri, the results are similar. One police department found a “marked decrease” in the number of red light running violations and motor vehicle crashes at intersections where cameras are installed, as well as those at surrounding intersections since the launch of the Red Light Camera Program in December 2007.
In addition to decreasing traffic crashes and red light running, traffic cameras can also provide useful footage in case of a car accident. Many car accidents result in a he-said, she-said situation, and a camera could be the tiebreaker that can help show who is really responsible for a collision.
What Should I Do If I Receive a Ticket from a Red Light Camera in St. Louis, MO?
If you receive a ticket from a red light camera, you generally have three options:
- Pay it – You cannot simply ignore a red light camera ticket. If you believe you did, in fact, run a red light, paying the ticket is the easiest way of dealing with the problem. Paying the ticket is an admission of guilt and waives your right to challenge the ticket. Running a red light results in two points added to your driving record, according to the Missouri Department of Revenue.
- Fight the ticket yourself – You can choose to fight the ticket yourself. Depending on the circumstances, this could be a relatively simple matter of signing an affidavit saying that someone else was the driver, if this is the case.
- Hire a lawyer – Lastly, you can choose to hire a lawyer to challenge the ticket in court. Your lawyer can help gather evidence to establish your defense. The state has the burden of proof to show you were driving at the time of the violation and that a violation occurred.
If you were hurt by a red light runner, a lawyer can help you gather evidence to show how the crash occurred.
Contact Our Car Accident Law Firm For Help Today
For more information, please contact Bradley Law Personal Injury Lawyers at your nearest location to schedule a free case evaluation today.
St. Louis Office
1430 Washington Ave Suite #226 St. Louis, MO 63103
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1509 NE Parvin Rd, Suite A., Kansas City, MO 64116
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