New Mexico Transporation Commision bans cams; Governor Agrees

March 30, 2010


So how is it that New Mexico’s leadership sees the pitfalls and corruption of automated ticketing, and yet our very similar state’s leadership does not?

I think we need to take a closer look at who benefits here in Arizona from Automated Ticketing.

Feds Investigation of REDFLEX heats up; Stock continues to drop.

March 24, 2010

You’d better watch your step Redflex, Heiler,  Specter, and company…

The feds are coming for you.

Jefferson Parish’s red light camera program is snaring more than heavy-footed pedestrians – and the feds have the subpoenas to prove it.

Background: Jay Specter Conviction

A loss of 2.6% today and 25% over the past 30 days.

RDF: Redflex Stock

Chandler Photo Enforcement Error Rate 52%

March 9, 2010

According to the East Valley Tribune, Chandler’s red light cameras result in enforceable tickets only 48% of the time. For fiscal year 2008-2009, the cameras flashed 29,000 times; however, 8000 of those tickets failed to capture critical information according to Detective Dave Ramer. Of the remaining tickets, 7000 (24%) were of commercial vehicles belonging to companies that refused to divulge the identity of the driver. According to the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, an average of 28% of drivers are NOT the registered owner the car, which further adds to the difficulty of issuing tickets. Then we know that of the 48% of “successful” tickets, only a fraction ever get paid.

The Chandler City Council is now contemplating an expansion of the system. But would the Chandler City Council have voted for the cameras had the sales pitch to Chandler been more honest to begin with?

Redflex: “We have this system that photographs drivers who run red lights… except we can only target a fraction of the people driving by, and it only works 48% of the time.  But did I mention we, (*cough*) I mean you can still make lots of money?”

The article goes on to imply that Chandler is disappointed that it couldn’t cash in on all of those missed opportunities, and had to settle for a paltry $300,000 while sending millions of dollars (drained from the local economy) to Redflex.

If the same statistics hold true for freeway traffic, 1 in 4 cars passing by a freeway camera are immune from photo tickets because of commercial plate registration. Again we ask, how is this constitutional? As a reminder, 

Arizona constitution, Article 2, Section 13 states:

No law shall be enacted granting to any citizen, class of citizens, or corporation other than municipal, privileges or immunities which, upon the same terms, shall not equally belong to all citizens or corporations.

It would seem to us that over 25% of the drivers on the road have inherent “immunities which, upon the same terms, (do) not equally belong to all citizens.” Compare this to human officers who can pull anyone over at any time for any reason.

Call To Action: The Chandler City Council is voting on whether to expand the red light contract on Thursday, Mar 11. Click here to find out how you can help influence their decision.

Avoiding Photo Enforcement, Tip #18

February 28, 2010

In this series, we’re providing tips and methods to exploit and highlight the weaknesses and problems of photo enforcement. Use at your own risk, your mileage may vary.

The most obvious example of how laughable photo enforcement is as a law enforcement tool is its inability to identify violators. Most patriots would see this alone as a reason why photo enforcement should never be used in this country.

Larry Fitzgerald, a wide receiver for the Arizona Cardinals, found this out first hand. He recently received 5 photo tickets in the mail; however, 4 of the 5 tickets had photos of a person clearly of another race. The Phoenix New Times reports that these tickets have since been dismissed, most likely after these tickets received media attention. Those of us who are unlikely to make news at outlets like TMZ will probably still have to go to court or respond to tickets issued to the wrong person. That is, only if we are served of course. An officer reviews each ticket? Yeah, right.

So, driving a car registered to a person of the opposite sex or registered to someone who looks nothing like you is our tip for the week. According to page 8 of the Redflex operations manual, they’ll still send you a ticket. But if you do get served and report to court, you should have no problems getting your case dismissed.

Tip: If you’re married, register the car you drive most in your spouse’s name ONLY, and register the spouse’s primary car in your name. And remember, you are NEVER required to divulge the true identity of the driver. That’s what police and detectives are for!

Avondale Police Chief: No Correlation Between Cameras and Accident Reduction, Program Canceled

February 10, 2010

The Arizona Republic reported today that Avondale is canceling its photo enforcement program. A year ago Avondale voted to expand the photo enforcement program. The project was to be completed in March, but it never got off the ground.

The city council cited budget concerns in canceling the program, as the alleged safety benefits are apparently too expensive.

More revealing was the police chief’s comments:

Police Chief Kevin Kotsur said there has been a drop in traffic accidents, but he believes the bad economy means fewer people driving. And the costs of the program are rising every year.
“Looking at the stats, there’s no significant correlation between the number of accidents and the impact photo enforcement has been having on those wrecks,” he said. “It’s down all over the city. It’s down all over the state.

The program cancellation marks another contract loss for ATS.

In other news, a federal judge scolded Redflex and ATS for their child-like behavior in their lawsuit over lying in bid proposals. This is of course, nothing new or surprising for those of us familiar with how these companies conduct their business.

KPHO (CBS 5): Telling it Like It ISN’T

February 9, 2010

Telling It Like It Isn't

In KPHO’s Monday night report on whether speed cameras make the valley streets safer, the news channel repeated their tagline, “telling it like it is,” emphasizing facts over opinions, and hoping that would be enough to keep viewers from noticing that they were about to do the complete opposite.

In the video, for an unexplained reason, they cherry-picked data from a small portion of the I-10 corridor, as well as selectively choosing data from only two months: November and December 2006 and 2008. Anyone who’s taken a basic statistics class knows that a bigger sample size is needed to draw any meaningful conclusions for this program that has over 15 months of data and 40 fixed camera locations. Additionally, it is suspicious why data for 2007 and 2009 were ignored, as well as years prior to 2006. If this data was shown, it would probably reflect the national trend toward fewer accidents that has been ongoing for decades – without cameras. And finally, they neglected to compare results with comparable states that don’t use cameras, such as Nevada. As we’ve reported here before, states like Nevada have achieved similar safety improvements over recent years WITHOUT the use of cameras.

Then KPHO proceeds to make the sweeping statement that the difference between 2006 and 2008 is the speed cameras, and gives credit to nothing else. There was absolutely no mention of any other possible changes between the two years such as changes in laws, construction activities, road improvements, changes in traffic enforcement tactics or policies, changes in DPS staffing and patrol levels, reductions in unlicensed (undocumented) drivers, or any other factors that may have changed over 2 years. The only other factor they mentioned was traffic volume, but only presumably because Representative Biggs mentioned it in his interview. But KPHO blew this one as well. They implied that there should be a 1-to-1 relationship between traffic volume and the number of accidents. In other words, they implied that if there was an 11% reduction in traffic volume that it would correspond to an 11% reduction in crashes. But the problem is that the relationship is much more complicated, and an 11% reduction in traffic volume can yield much greater safety improvements due to lower traffic density. KPHO declined to inform viewers about this important little fact.

Finally, by riding around with a DPS patrolmen looking for an accident to investigate, KPHO tried to paint a picture that freeway accidents are a rarity now, but anyone who listens to the radio traffic reports during their commute knows that the accident list is just as long as it’s always been.

KPHO, telling it like it isn’t.

DPS 2009 Numbers Not All They are Cracked Up To Be

January 9, 2010

Local news outlets tonight are regurgitating DPS’ press release with 2009’s traffic statistics which show a significant decrease in crashes when compared to previous years. Naturally, the credit is all going to photo enforcement – completely ignoring other significant contributing factors and trends: fewer miles driven due to the economy and unemployment (and less-crowded roads), new, draconian DUI laws, stricter teen driver’s license laws, safer cars, improved roads, and more.

So we did some number crunching of their own, and the results are NOT surprising. Our neighbor Nevada, who isn’t using photo radar experienced a similar decline in crashes when compared to Arizona. Their data is available here, but unfortunately does not include December data (yet). Still, the numbers provide much-needed perspective. To arrive at these numbers, we summed the data from the Northern, Central, and Southern regional Nevada reports.

In the end, Arizona beat Nevada by only 5% in total crash reduction and 4% in road fatalities. Suddenly, the 26% reduction in fatalities isn’t the grand achievement DPS is trying to take credit for. Nevada came VERY close, and did it without scameras and talivans.

Another problem with the Arizona data is that the numbers are statewide for all DPS-investigated crashes. This includes thousands and thousands of miles of roads, but there are only 36 fixed camera locations and 40 mobile units distributed about the state, so the sphere of influence for the cameras is quite limited. Scameras can’t be credited for alleged improvements in locations where they aren’t installed or frequently present.

And while we’re at it… Have you ever wondered why the state doesn’t follow the advice set forth in ADOT’s speed limit information page? Despite understanding that the 85th-percentile speed is the safest speed, most roads around the state are set far below this standard. Kudos to Utah for trying to comply with this standard and actually raising limits with very positive results.

Update: See Fox news coverage of this store here.

Another City Shows Increased Accidents from Red Light Cameras

January 7, 2010

Peoria would like you to believe that they are alone in experiencing an increase in accidents due to red light cameras, but they are not. They join Los Angeles, Grande Prairie (Canada), Clarksville, TN, Temple Terrace, FL, and now Spokane, WA in recent announcements about the failure of RLC’s to make intersections safer. The Seattle Times reports:

Intersections where Spokane installed red light cameras in 2008 in the name of safety saw an increase in crashes and injuries in the first year of the controversial program.

There were 38 collisions at the three intersections the year after the city began fining violators caught on tape. That’s up from 32 the previous year, according to police collision reports provided to The Spokesman-Review.

Injury accidents at the intersections also rose from 11 the year before to 14 after.

Like the other cities, Spokane officials scrambled for excuses and justifications as to why the citizens should continue to be subjected to intersections where they face a greater chance of injuries so that the city can continue to enjoy what amounted to $108,000 in profit for 2009:

Spokane Mayor Mary Verner called the data “interesting,” but cautioned that it’s too early to make a final judgment on camera enforcement.

“The program has been effective in that we seem to have caught a lot of people running red lights,” Verner said. “If we’re not seeing a decline of injury collisions, then we need to figure out why not.”

If Spokane officials were honest, they’d join the likes of Southland City, CA, San Bernardino, CA in pulling the plug on their camera programs, a move that truly would make their cities safer.

Photo Enforcement Continues to Burden the Innocent

November 30, 2009


Don't Waste My Time

Don't Waste My Time

Innocent vehicle owners continue to be victimized, harassed, and burdened with erroneous photo enforcement tickets. Despite promises and claims by officials that all tickets are reviewed for accuracy prior to being issued, many obvious erroneous tickets are issued every day.


In this latest article in the Arizona Daily Star, we learn that the designer of the novelty plate ‘N JOY AZ’ who has the one and only real license plate on his vehicle constantly receives tickets that should have been issued to vehicles displaying the novelty plate. Despite obvious vehicle description mismatches and the fact that novelty plates are often placed on the fronts of vehicles rather than the rear, DPS, Redflex, and other scamera companies are unable or unwilling to let these discrepancies deter their quest for profit.

Novelty plates in the wrong location aren’t the only problems that scamera companies have with being correct. A couple in Wyoming tells us that Redflex has trouble telling the difference between a Wyoming truck and a car license plate.

Of course, there are the classic incidents where parked vehicles received speeding tickets in the Netherlands and the UK.

And then there are the incidents where the equipment malfunctions or is set wrong, like when 600 tickets in Scottsdale were tossed due to a faulty sensor.

Don’t speed and you have nothing to worry about? Think again… We ALL need to be worried about this theft of time and resources taken from the innocent drivers who are burdened with spending time and money and incurring expenses in order to clear their records.

Photo Radar: Discredited, Pt. 1

October 26, 2009

itsfraudCameraFRAUD is proud to introduce Photo Radar: Discredited, a new series dedicated to factually debunking the automated ticketing industry’s half-truths and misinformation.

This series will pose common arguments used by proponents of automated ticketing and allow YOU to submit your response in the comments section. The best comments and responses will later be added to the original article, creating a powerful reader-created collaborative work available for future public reference.

Part One: The Claim: “If you’re not doing anything wrong, you don’t have anything to worry about.”

The Facts: –discussion is open, submit your response below in comments section—

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