New Study Reveals Red Light Cameras May Actually Increase Fatal Accidents in Florida, Nationwide

480202_broken_car%20sxchu%20website.jpgAccording to research recently released by the University of South Florida, cities that utilize red light cameras have a 25 percent higher rate of traffic fatalities related to red light running than cities that do not use the technology. The research, published in the Florida Health Review, completely refutes a February 2011 study disseminated by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety which stated red light cameras would have prevented approximately 800 additional traffic deaths in 48 cities during a five year period.

In the February 2011 study, a five year period during which 62 cities did not have red light cameras was selected. Next, a five year period during which 14 of the cities had active red light cameras installed and operational and the remaining 48 cities did not use red light cameras at all was chosen. After the Insurance Institute compared the data, it arrived at the conclusion red light cameras could have prevented many red light running fatalities in camera-free cities.

In contrast, the University of South Florida study concluded the Insurance Institute’s analysis was not only scientifically flawed, but also highly suspect because the insurance industry funded the entirety of the research. Insurance companies have a significant financial stake in red light camera tickets. Although tickets from red light cameras do not add points to a Florida driver’s license, they are still used to increase insurance premiums.

Other problems with the Insurance Institute’s research also existed. For example, several of the cities evaluated that never implemented red light cameras experienced very few or no fatal accidents associated with red light running during the relevant time periods. Consequently, it was impossible for researchers to truly compare before and after death rates. After researchers at the University of South Florida re-analyzed the statistics used by the Insurance Institute using valid research methods, they concluded red light running fatalities were in fact significantly higher in red light camera cities.

Florida residents spend countless hours in their automobiles each year and motor vehicle collisions are an unfortunate fact of life. Car accidents are one of the leading causes of personal injury and death in Florida. Injuries sustained in a motor vehicle collision can range from minor to catastrophic. Automobile accidents are generally caused by driver inattention, impairment or fatigue. Other factors may include defective vehicles, speeding, road debris, and aggressive driving. If you were injured on the road, a knowledgeable car accident attorney can help you file a claim against the negligent party.

If you or a loved one was injured through no fault of your own in a motor vehicle accident, contact the law firm of Lazarus & Lazarus, P.A. Our experienced Broward County car accident lawyers will assist you in obtaining the compensation you deserve after a collision. We represent clients throughout Florida including Fort Lauderdale, Weston, Orlando, Palm Beach County, Broward County, and Dade County. To schedule a free initial consultation, call Lazarus & Lazarus today at (954) 356-0006 or contact us through our website.

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Additional Resources:

Red Light Cameras May Increase Fatalities: USF Study, by Chris Sweeney, New Times Broward-Palm Beach

Counterpoint: The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Study Actually Found Cities Using Red Light Cameras Had Higher Red Light Running Fatality Rates, by Barbara Langland-Orban, PhD, Etienne E. Pracht, PhD, John T. Large, PhD, Florida Health Review