What Happened to the Red Light Cameras in Coral Springs?

PhotoenforcedBy: Sharon Aron Baron

Back in 2010, the Commission voted unanimously to bring red light cameras to the City of Coral Springs, but after four years, the cameras have now quietly gone inactive.

Not only inactive, but all cameras have been removed.

Assistant City Manager Susan Grant told Coral Springs Talk that due to the pending legal challenges in the Fourth District Court of Appeals, the City will take a wait and see approach whether or not they will renew their contract with Xerox which was formerly named Redflex.

The Fourth District Court of Appeals said that a city is “not authorized to delegate police power by entering into a contract that allows a private vendor to screen data and decide whether a violation has occurred before sending that data to a traffic infraction enforcement officer to use as the basis for authorizing a citation.”   

What this means, is that no City can use a red light ticket camera company’s personnel to process traffic tickets if they are not law enforcement officers – which is what many were doing, including American Traffic Solutions which is the vendor for Tamarac, Sunrise and Hollywood which is the City in Question.

The court went further and said: “Dismissal of the citation is the appropriate remedy where a private third party effectively decides whether a traffic violation has occurred and a citation should be issued.”  Other Cities that have dropped their red light camera programs are:  Margate, Hallandale and Boca Raton.

Hallandale Beach Commissioner Bill Julian was behind the push to get rid of the controversial cameras in his City.

“I thought it was a money grab from cities taking advantage of the taxpayers,” he told the Sun Sentinel

Coral Springs City Staff and the Chief of Police at the time recommended the cameras because they believed they reduced accidents. Even former Mayor Roy Gold, was a proponent of them as well. Two years later, they had eight cameras around the City and according to the Sun Sentinel, the intersections were becoming safer.  “The number of red-light violations is coming down,” said Chief Pustizzi.  “At the University Drive-Ramblewood north-bound approach, there were only seven violations in February. If the numbers keep coming down, we may have to think about moving that camera around.”

But the cameras weren’t without their flaws, and back in 2013, Channel 7 News reported that the red light cameras positioned at Wiles Road and 441 in Coral Springs had been improperly calibrated with short yellow lights.

This particular intersection, raised eyebrows at one meeting when commissioners saw how many cars were being cited.  They believed that the cameras were effective at actually stopping the red-light runners.

About Sharon Aron Baron

Sharon Aron Baron Sharon Aron Baron is the Editor of Talk Media and writer for Coral Springs Talk. CST was created in 2012 to provide News, Views and Entertainment for the residents of Coral Springs, Parkland and the rest of South Florida.

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  • Joy Carter

    Just the THOUGHT of them being there, keeps me on alert, to not go through the yellow!

    • Fred

      Just the thought of injuring myself, my passengers, and other motorists, is all it takes for me to drive safely.

  • DanH

    Y’know, if we did away with the 4th amendment completely we could clean up neighbourhoods and basically end drug trafficking. Maybe we should just start ignoring that as well. Y’know, if it makes people safer.

    • concerned

      haha, I agree with you there. sure why not.

  • GS

    Don’t we have enough daily pressures on us every day? Now we have to have white lights flashing in our eyes at intersections, and we drive away thinking, “Was that me? What did I do?” And we think about it for weeks while we nervously watch our mailbox for a ticket. Wasn’t that light still yellow? Did I make a wrong choice? Pressure, pressure, pressure. Personally, I don’t need any more pressures.

    • concerned

      True and the fines from these cameras are way highhhhhhhhhhhhh above the normal too!

  • Donna Remson

    Oh thank God! I will go blocks out of my way and avoid some stores entirely just so I don’t have to worry if that white light flash was for me on a yellow or for someone else. I don’t need more stress in my life.

  • Finally common sense prevailed.
    Now class action lawsuits can begin to recoup the money cities took from drivers.

  • jcwconsult

    It is great that the Coral Springs cameras are going away. They are a vicious money grab scam facilitated by changes to the rules on the minimum length of yellow intervals put in place by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) in July 2011 and September 2013 to encourage cities to use yellows too short for the ACTUAL approach speeds of at least 85% of the vehicles. WHY would FDOT want these too-short and less safe yellows used? Could it be because the state government gets an $83 commission on each ticket, some 52.5% of the total camera loot collected without the state paying any part of the high camera costs, typically $4,000 to $5,000 per month per camera? Can you connect the DOTs? (pun intended)

    Florida residents who do not like these vicious money grab scams need to contact their state Representatives, Senators and the Governor to insist they all actively and publicly support House Bill 4025 to ban the cameras statewide. Let the officials know that NO red light cameras are acceptable to you under any circumstances and that you intend to vote only for anti-camera candidates. Contact info:
    http://www.myfloridahouse.gov/sections/representatives/myrepresentative.aspx

    http://www.flsenate.gov/senators/find

    http://www.flgov.com/contact-governor/

    James C. Walker, Life Member – National Motorists Association