Opinion: Is This the Red Light Camera’s Ugly Step-brother?
Check out this first line in David Matthau’s article on cameras being put on school buses.
“Since 2014, a total of 9,455 tickets have been issued to drivers in New Jersey for passing a school bus that is stopped with its red lights flashing as students are getting on or off.”
That shocked me. While I realize this would be a dangerous problem, I’ve never seen anyone do it. So I’m stunned to see well over a thousand people a year are caught by a cop doing something so boneheaded and clearly many more do it when a cop isn’t there to see.
That’s where new legislation comes in to put what amounts to the old red light cameras on school buses except they would get pictures of cars going around a stopped school bus that had the stop sign out and lights flashing. Tickets would be sent in the mail. First offense would be $250. Up to $500 plus a little community service might be thrown in for subsequent violations.
The red light camera program was easy to be against. Lights weren’t calibrated properly. Townships made up their own rules regarding length of stop time for right turns on red. The cameras might not show the whole story of why someone ran a light.
This one is harder to come out against. It involves children. It involves scenarios which are less likely to have acceptable extenuating circumstances. I get it.
But I’ve never been comfortable with technology replacing police officers. Also never comfortable with trying to account for something that happened weeks prior when your memory to defend yourself is surely lacking.
Will it pass? Probably. Should it? You tell us. Take our poll below.