1 Dead, 9 Hurt in Redflex Photo Zone

59thInterstate 10 was closed early Sunday morning after a fatal wreck occurred within a Redflex photo enforcement zone according to ABC 15:

Investigators said a 2002, 4-door Chevrolet vehicle driven by Fernando Acuna, 18, merged into the same lane that a 2001, 4-door Chevrolet, driven by Edgar Barajas, 18, was attempting to move in to. When the vehicles sideswiped, the 2001 Chevy spun out, struck the other vehicle a second time and rolled over. Five passengers inside the 2001 vehicle were ejected.  Acuna and his passenger, Michael Echevarra, 15, were not hurt.

Accident rates stay statistically the same or increase when automated ticketing is implemented. DPS has failed to release any data in 2009 that indicates any reduction in collisions or fatalities.

Our take: Due to a number of serious, high-profile accidents such as this tragedy on Sunday, the statewide numbers probably aren’t looking too good right about now.

Photo radar is a reactive revenue scheme, not a proactive safety program.

10 Responses to 1 Dead, 9 Hurt in Redflex Photo Zone

  1. RPr says:


    a list of studies that show red light camera cause more accidents

  2. EMTharper says:

    Maybe if DPS trusted cops instead of cameras, one of these vehicles could have been stopped before this accident happened.

    Maybe one of these cars was snapped by the previous cameras the same night. I’m sure the timely receipt of a ticket within three weeks will help change the driver’s behavior before someone gets hurt… oops. Too late.

    Maybe the funding of DPS or MCSO officers, and not a foreign company, would have provided the resources to stop the vehicle with all the people not wearing seat belts and prevent what could have been an even greater loss of life.

    Photo radar makes me sick. Profits before people.

    • Stacey says:

      DPS Commander Tom Woodward says patrolmen found the Loop 101 cameras onerous. He said they might have put the public’s safety at risk. “ It deterred officers assigned to the East Valley from working that area,” Woodward says. “We still responded to calls, but officers were not in that area working traffic proactively as much as they were prior to photo enforcement.”

  3. Mike says:

    Wow, what a tragedy! It’s terrible that they put these ATM’s right where traffic merges so people are dividing their attention between their speed, where the cameras are, and where other traffic is. It would be hard to believe that this didn’t play a part in this accident.

    My condolences go out to the family of the deceased and wishes for a speedy recovery to the injured.

    • Indeed, the camera at McDowell & 101 on the West side always has me trying to cover my face while attempting to change lanes, and signal, and take the correct exit. I’m definetely way more dangerous this way, but that’s the way DPS wants it. They think it’s safer to hide your face and bury your eyes into your speedometer than to stay looking forward and being aware of traffic around you.

  4. thegeez says:

    What area in phoenix isn’t a camera zone? And what does someone sideswipping someone have to do with the cameras. And PRs, if you can’t drive responsibly, please, for the sake of my family and others, get off the road.

    • Malfeasant says:

      What does someone sideswiping someone have to do with cameras? a lot, actually- some people think if you change lanes fast enough as you pass the camera, you will “confuse” it- there could be some truth to it, if you watch when they’re triggered, the forward and rearward cameras don’t fire at the same time, so it’s concievable that you could move from one lane to another between the two flashes… personally I don’t think it would work, I think they have a wide enough field of view, you might appear off-center, but you’ll still be in view. And I’m sure as hell not about to try it and see, I may be crazy but I ain’t dumb.

  5. Scot sayz says:

    Some time ago I was working at the county hospital in down town Phoenix. I had a chance to talk to a Highway Patrol Officer about how people drive on the AZ HWY’s. He told me that as long as you stay in one lane and go with the flow of the vehicals in your lane, they will not bother you. If they see you constantly changing lanes only to put yourself ahead of the pack, they will pull you over.
    The photo radar ticket I received stated that I was doing 67 in a 55 southbound on I-17 near the Bethany Home rd overpass. If anyone has ever paid any attention to the speed on the 17 they would notice that it changes 3 times. From 55 to 65 then back to 55. I know that almost everyone knows that the cameras are set at 11 miles per hour over the the posted limit and even with the added posting of the photo enforcement zones it could never be enough. I would realy like to know how many tickets have been issued in this area. I am waiting to hear back on my summons to plead NOT GUILTY. I will probably lose but atleast I can be one of the thousands who are willing to waste the courts time and maybe they will realize that the photo radar cameras are also a waste of time and money.

  6. James Howard says:

    According to the traffic reports I listen on the radio every day, the intersection of Oracle and River Roads in Tucson has had quite a few crashes since the cameras were put in. Most crashes at intersections occur when the light is green, and someone makes a left turn in front of oncoming traffic. Something photo enforcement does not give you a ticket for. Being a millisecond late, yes, but not for something that actually is dangerous.

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