New Jerseyans still back red-light cameras, but not as much

Red-light cameras (right) are mounted on eastbound Route 70, at Springdale Road in Cherry Hill. The town has collected $1.26 million in fines using the cameras. TOM GRALISH / Staff Photographer
Red-light cameras (right) are mounted on eastbound Route 70, at Springdale Road in Cherry Hill. The town has collected $1.26 million in fines using the cameras. TOM GRALISH / Staff Photographer
Posted: March 27, 2014

A majority of New Jersey motorists continues to support the use of red-light cameras, but in declining numbers, a new survey by AAA shows.

The poll of 1,000 motorists found 56 percent support use of the cameras to catch drivers who run red lights. That's down from 77 percent in 2007, before New Jersey allowed the use of such cameras, and down from 61 percent in 2011, as cameras were being used in 25 towns as part of a five-year pilot program.

Some of the change in attitude may be attributed to their increased usage, as people who have been caught by red-light cameras are more likely to view them negatively, AAA Mid-Atlantic spokeswoman Jenny Robinson said.

Of those polled who had been ticketed by a red-light camera, 52 percent opposed the use of the cameras, while among those who had not been ticketed, 38 percent opposed their use.

Of those polled, 22 percent said they had been caught by a red-light camera.

In New Jersey, cameras are operating at 76 intersections. A required annual report on their effectiveness has not yet been released for 2013 by the state Department of Transportation.

Three Camden County towns (Cherry Hill, Gloucester Township, and Stratford) and three Gloucester County towns (Glassboro, Deptford, and Monroe) are in New Jersey's pilot program, and red-light cameras in those towns generated $9.5 million in fines in their first two years of operation.

New Jersey's five-year red-light camera pilot program, which began in 2009, is to end in December. Unless the program is extended by the state legislature, the cameras will be turned off when the test period ends.

In Philadelphia, 26 intersections are equipped with red-light cameras. Red-light cameras also are planned for Abington Township, Montgomery County, and Springfield Township, Delaware County.

AAA's telephone survey of 1,000 motorists in New Jersey was conducted in November. The margin of error was 3.1 percent, AAA said.


pnussbaum@phillynews.com

215-854-4587

@nussbaumpaul

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