An editorial in the Chicago Tribune, extolling the virtues of red-light cameras, spoke only of citing-motorists who drive through red lights. The thousand-pound elephant in the room that the editorial ignored was right-turn-on-red violations. The trend of the media to write about the red-light cameras and fail to mention that ninety percent of the tickets generated have nothing to do with safety. They have to do with not coming to a complete stop when preparing to make a right turn. Suburban municipalities are making millions of dollars citing drivers who do not come to a complete 100% perfect stop for “failure to stop before turning right on red.” On my most recent “violation,” I put a magnifying glass up to the computer screen to see that my wheels were just barely moving before I turned right on red. The hearing officer ruled against me and I was fined $100.00. This type of violation, especially on a first offense, is appalling.
I urge the paper to ask each nearby community for the breakdown of red light camera violations. I’m guessing that failure to make a complete stop before turning right at a red light would make up even more than ninety percent of tickets issued. The communities that do this are stealing money from hardworking citizens.
I also urge all drivers to do what I now do: stop and do not make your right turn until the light turns green. Forget about having a smoother faster traffic flow at intersections. It isn’t worth the headache.
Mark Renz, Oak Lawn , IL