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Countdown to cameras

SIMON SMITH
Last updated 05:00 24/07/2013
Botany MP Jami-Lee Ross
Rose Cawley

SEEING RED: Botany MP Jami-Lee Ross says there is significant concern in his electorate about red light running at intersections like Te Irirangi Drive and Smales Rd.

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Red light runners beware.

A new range of wireless cameras will be installed across the country from next year.

Fourteen Auckland sites are earmarked for cameras following a two-year trial and half are in the Counties Manukau East police area.

The intersections are named in a report by Abley Transportation Consultants with the three most dangerous being on Te Irirangi Drive.

Exactly where the cameras will go has yet to be finalised.

But prevention co-ordinator Senior Sergeant Pete Kaveney hopes the area will get its fair share.

"We've been aching to have them in place ever since the trial," he says. "Those cameras will free up even more police time to go about those other activities which are preventing crime and crashes in the area."

Mr Kaveney says all trouble spots and major arterial routes are regularly patrolled, especially the major Botany intersection at the end of Te Irirangi Drive.

"The red light running is not on a late orange or just getting through. Some of it is well into the red," he says.

"It's a constant focus of the police in this area."

Running a red light attracts a fine of $150.

The camera trial in Auckland between 2008 and 2010 saw a 69 per cent drop in crashes caused by red light runners.

Associate Transport Minister Michael Woodhouse is keen to see technology implemented.

"I'm expecting to see these new generation red light cameras appearing at intersections from the end of next year," he says.

The cameras which use radar might also be used to catch speedsters.

Statistics show 11 people died and 169 were seriously injured as a result of red light running crashes between 2008 and 2012. There were 1466 minor injuries.

The Ministry of Transport estimates the annual "social cost" is $43 million.

Botany MP Jami-Lee Ross welcomes the latest initiative and says there is significant concern in his electorate about red-light running.

"I've seen for myself how some of our intersections are serious hot spots.

"This move will mean safer streets in the long term."

Abley report author Paul Durdin says each intersection being considered for the new cameras should be audited first.

"This will help to ensure that all other options available have been considered to mitigate potential risks associated with red light running and that selection of a red light camera is considered to be the last resort."

The report was commissioned by Auckland Transport on behalf of the New Zealand Local Authority Traffic Institute.

It uses the NZ Transport Agency's Crash Analysis System data for 575 intersections across the city from July 2006 to June 2011.

Nationally the study found 34 per cent of all injury crashes at traffic lights were caused by red light running. hopes the area will get its fair share.

"We've been aching to have them in place ever since the trial," he says.

"Those cameras will free up even more police time to go about those other activities which are preventing crime and crashes in the area."

Mr Kaveney says all troublespots and major arterial routes are regularly patrolled, especially the major Botany intersection at the end of Te Irirangi Drive.

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"The red light running is not on a late orange or just getting through. Some of it is well into the red," he says.

"It's a constant focus of the police in this area."

Running a red light attracts a fine of $150.

The camera trials in Auckland between 2008 and 2010 saw a 69 per cent drop in crashes caused by red light runners.

Associate Transport Minister Michael Woodhouse is keen to see technology implemented.

"I'm expecting to see these new generation red light cameras appearing at intersections from the end of next year," he says.

The cameras will also be used to catch speedsters.

Statistics show 11 people died and 169 were seriously injured as a result of red light running crashes between 2008 and 2012. There were 1466 minor injuries.

The Ministry of Transport estimates the annual "social cost" is $43 million.

Botany MP Jami-Lee Ross welcomes the latest initiative and says there is significant concern in his electorate about red-light running.

"I've seen for myself how some of our intersections are serious hot spots," he says.

"This move will mean safer streets in the long term."

Abley report author Paul Durdin says each intersection being considered for the new cameras should be audited first.

"This will help to ensure that all other options available have been considered to mitigate potential risks associated with red light running and that selection of a red light camera is considered to be the last resort."

The report uses the New Zealand Transport Agency's Crash Analysis System data for 575 intersections across the city from July 2006 to June 2011.

It found that 34 per cent of all injury crashes at traffic lights in New Zealand were caused by red light running during that period.

- Eastern Courier

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