HOW IT WORKS
A common offence that most drivers come across is the red light camera. A red light fine is a total cost of $325, there are no demerit points. You do have the option to fight this offence in court.
So how do red light cameras work?
Firstly, the cameras work as soon as the light changes. It does not take pictures of cars who enter the intersection when the light is amber, however, it does take a photo of cars passing through when its red. The camera scans the cars approaching and checks to see if the speed is consistent with stopping.
Secondly, the camera will then time stamp the photograph of the vehicle. It will take two photos within seconds of each other; one as the car approaches the light and the second is as it passes through the intersection.
Finally, the photos are reviewed by Provincial Offence Officers who follow a list of criteria to determine if it is a red light offence.
RED LIGHT CAMERA LOCATIONS
So how do red light camera locations get decided? They are chosen from past data analysis of the intersections. Red cameras are placed in areas where there have been fatalities or serious collisions in recent years.
HALTON RED LIGHT CAMERAS STATS
From May 2017 to May 2018 through those 12 months the following had been the top 6 red light camera intersections:
- Guelph Line and South Service Road, Burlington (1,906 tickets) Note: Camera was installed in late 2017
- Trafalgar Road and Leighland Avenue/Iroquois Shore Boulevard, Oakville (1,562 tickets)
- Derry Road and James Snow Parkway, Milton (1,496 tickets)
- Guelph Line and Mountainside Drive and Davidson Court, Burlington (1,481 tickets)
- Derry Road and Commercial Street/Santa Maria Boulevard, Milton (1,228 tickets) Note: Camera was installed in late 2017
- 10 Side Road and Ninth Line, Halton Hills (1,079 tickets)
THE ARTICLE: INDEPENDENT FREE PRESS
To all those aggressive drivers out there: you may want to think twice about speeding up with that light turns amber in the hopes of shaving a few minutes off your commute.
In addition to the potential to cause a serious collision, there could be a red light camera waiting to catch you in the act.
Red light camera infractions are more common at certain intersections in Halton than others, whether it be the nature of the intersection, the location itself, or the fact that some drivers may be unaware of the camera.
Here are the top six locations in Halton where red light camera tickets have been issued from May 2017 to May 2018:
1) Guelph Line and South Service Road, Burlington (1,906 tickets) Note: Camera was installed in late 2017
2) Trafalgar Road and Leighland Avenue/Iroquois Shore Boulevard, Oakville (1,562 tickets)
3) Derry Road and James Snow Parkway, Milton (1,496 tickets)
4) Guelph Line and Mountainside Drive and Davidson Court, Burlington (1,481 tickets)
5) Derry Road and Commercial Street/Santa Maria Boulevard, Milton (1,228 tickets) Note: Camera was installed in late 2017
6) 10 Side Road and Ninth Line, Halton Hills (1,079 tickets)
Where are the other Halton locations for red light cameras?
Red light cameras are currently located at the following intersections:
Appleby Line and Mainway (718 tickets from May 2017-May 2018)
Brant Street and North Service Road (749 tickets from May 2017-May 2018)
Guelph Line and Upper Middle Road (232 tickets from May 2017-May 2018)
Trafalgar Road and 5 Side Road (709 tickets from May 2017-May 2018)
10 Side Road and Eighth Line (164 tickets from May 2017-May 2018) Note: Camera was installed in late 2017
Derry Road and Ontario Street (641 tickets from May 2017-May 2018)
Derry Road and Trafalgar Road (this camera is currently removed due to construction but will be replaced following completion)
Derry Road and Savoline Boulevard (555 tickets from May 2017-May 2018) Note: Camera was installed in late 2017
Trafalgar Road and Upper Middle Road (495 tickets from May 2017-May 2018)
Upper Middle Road and Oxford Avenue (753 tickets from May 2017-May 2018)
Upper Middle Road and Sixth Line (596 tickets from May 2017-May 2018) Note: Camera was installed in late 2017
How do the red light cameras work?
The cameras have the ability to function as soon as a traffic light turns red (drivers who enter an intersection during a traffic light’s amber phase will not be penalized, even if the light turns red as they are passing through). The cameras scan the approaching vehicles for any that appear to be moving at a speed not consistent with stopping, said Roger Browne, manager of traffic control and safety systems for the City of Toronto.
The camera will take two time-stamped photographs of the vehicle: one is taken as the vehicle approaches the stop line and the second is taken as the vehicle moves through the intersection. The two images are snapped less than one second apart.
Vehicles making a left-hand turn during the red phase and vehicles making a right-hand turn, without stopping, during a red phase can also be issued a charge, he added.
What happens once the photos are taken?
Each set of photos is reviewed by provincial offence officers at the Joint Municipal Processing Centre in Toronto, who are expected to follow a list of criteria to determine whether or not there is enough evidence for the red light camera charges to stand up in court, Browne said. He says the officers look for a variety of elements, including confirming the date and time on the image, making sure the licence plate is clear and legible, making sure the stop bar is visible and ensuring that the streets signs can be seen in the photo to verify the vehicle’s location.
If the image checks off in every category, the individual the vehicle is registered under is mailed a fine. If it does not, charges cannot be issued.
How are the red light camera locations chosen?
The red light camera locations are chosen based on the number of fatal and serious injury collisions that have occurred at those intersections in recent years.
If a driver does get caught on red light camera, what’s the penalty?
The penalty for being caught by a red light camera is a $325 fine (no points). Drivers do have the ability to fight the charges in court. However, Browne says that due to the thoroughness of the officers’ review of the images, fighting the ticket can backfire for others. He notes that for those who choose to take the court route, there is always the possibility the fine amount will be raised.