Anti-Camera Sentiment Hits Silver Screen

September 9, 2010

The Problem

Growing frustration over the intrusion of automated ticketing machines is showing up more often in the arena of entertainment.

A big-screen remake of 1930s superhero “The Green Hornet” is set for release in January of 2011, and the producers of the film are using the violent destruction of a “red light camera” as the ending action sequence (video) in a 2 minute 30 second trailer available on YouTube.

The Reaction

The “superheros” find themselves snapped by what appears to be a Hollywood adaption of the infamous “Redflex scamera head.”

Response to the “cash flash” is swift, as a missile is launched from the vehicle which subsequently dispatches the scamera to a fiery, explosive demise.

The Solution

The highly-rated BBC program “Top Gear” recently used a similar, real-life sequence to terminate the existence of a Gatso lookalike.

The tables were turned in the 2008 action-thriller “Eagle Eye,” in which a rogue central computer named “ARIAA” used red light cameras and license plate recognition to locate and scramble missiles against a driver and passenger who were attempting to shut the system down.

Actual removal of the ticketing devices around Arizona is proving to be much less entertaining. Observers report that the Redflex – DPS cameras on the US-60 have started to come down, with cameras in the highway median being removed first.

Redflex’s piezo in-ground sensors will remain in place, becoming the property of Arizona Department of Transportation. They will likely remain unused as ADOT has their own network of sensors to anonymously monitor freeway traffic speeds.


“Considerable Public Opposition”

August 26, 2010

Note to Redflex: It ain't getting better.

Beleaguered ticketing firm Redflex blames “considerable public opposition” for their new financial woes. The talivan and speed camera peddler earned pilfered only $442,000 for the first half of 2010.

Our guess is that cross-town ‘rival’ American Traffic Solutions isn’t doing much better: ATS is vigorously fighting any and all local attempts to end their automated ticketing scheme.


“Photo Enforcement” Becomes Toxic

August 24, 2010

What do you do when your industry approaches market saturation and increased public opposition?

This is the question the peddlers of automated ticketing will have to start asking themselves in the immediate future if they hope to survive in any form whatsoever.

Almost all large United States cities have been approached by either Redflex or American Traffic Solutions pitching the tired, debunked claims of improved traffic safety.

Unfortunately for these companies, voters and drivers have awakened to the scheme and are opposing new and existing systems worldwide over a variety of reasons, from civil liberties concerns to the proper role of government.

Smaller and smaller communities are being being swindled into signing contracts with these corporations, resulting in millions of dollars being extracted from local economies and sent directly to the profiteering vendors.

The blowback to such installations has ranged from expected opposition to cold-blooded murder. Last week, the confessed shooter of a Redflex photo radar van driver in Arizona was sentenced to 22 years in prison.

Unclear is the liability the State of Arizona will face for their “romp in the bed” with corporatism in the form of photo enforcement. Redflex was contractually obligated to provide “public service announcements” to explain automated ticketing to the public when the statewide ticketing contract was signed with the Department of Public Safety.

DPS is now being sued by the surviving family, and rightfully so. It doesn’t take an overpaid government beancounter to figure out that placing an unarmed civilian in a vehicle falsely marked as law enforcement is a bad idea.

With an onslaught of bad publicity, automated ticketing vendors may remember 2010 as the year their business model went sour. Lawsuits demanding refunds plague Redflex in Minnesota to the tune of millions of dollars while increased legal challenges in Florida and California threaten the very existence of red light cameras and so-called speed enforcement.

The Cameras are Coming Down… but in the end it may be due to the fatally flawed business model based on greed and inconclusive results that ATS and Redflex have depended on for over a decade.


Redflex Sales Hucksters are Commission-Based

August 19, 2010

Hi, Vince here from Redflex! Get ready to "snapshot" your way out of wreckless, drunken government spending with our new ScamWow! It's so easy!

Lobbyists who visit local city councils for Redflex are compensated on a commission-based scheme, and in one instance the cash was promised to be split with the wife of a local judge:

[Redflex] which also operates Victorian red light cameras – is at the centre of several court actions in Louisiana after a local council outside New Orleans turned off the cameras last January amid concerns company lobbyists were earning a share from camera fines…

Redflex Holdings allegedly agreed to pay 3.2 per cent of its share of camera revenue to the former United States councillor, who subsequently arranged to split the cash with the wife of a local judge.

Okay, camera apologi$t$: tell u$ again how it’$ not all about the money?


ATS Van Caught Speeding, Failing to Signal

August 16, 2010

American Traffic Solutions or Above The Statutes, Inc?

An American Traffic Solutions / City of Mesa “photo enforcement” vehicle was caught red handed early Saturday afternoon breaking various traffic laws.

The incident occurred early Saturday afternoon on westbound US-60 in Mesa, Arizona near exit 181. A CameraFRAUD volunteer witnessed and recorded the incident.

The white Chevrolet Uplander was observed exceeding the posted speed limit on the US-60 and failing to signal a right-hand turn onto north Stapley Dr.

CameraFRAUD Tyranny Response Unit issues "Notice of Violation" to American Traffic Solutions

CameraFRAUD has collected details about the “tali-van” scofflaw, and in a twist of roles, will issue a “Notice of Violation” to American Traffic Solutions on Monday.

Much like the millions of notices the Scottsdale-based company issues each year, the violator will be given the option of paying an arbitrary “fine” or attending a hearing.

An “Assessed Donation” in the amount of $5,000 made payable to the Children’s Cancer and Blood Foundation by American Traffic Solutions is requested by CameraFRAUD to cure the violation and the flagrant disregard for the law exhibited by the photo radar van driver. (Disclosure: We are not affiliated with CCBF, nor are they a sponsor or part of our request).

Automated ticketing vendors have a long history of breaking various statutes and flaunting the law when it suites their needs. In September of 2008, a Redflex van driver was arrested for DUI while driving from Scottsdale to Tempe to set up the vehicle.

In September of 2009, another Redflex driver was caught on tape in north Phoenix driving recklessly in the fully-marked faux-DPS Ford Escape.

In addition, numerous high-ranking executives of both ATS and Redflex have ignored their own tickets in a blatant example of do-as-we-say-not-as-we-do.

ATS has never been shy invoking “the children” as a reason for the usage of automated ticketing. Now that they’ve been caught (again), it’s time for them to put their money where their mouth is and make a donation to a worthy, independent cause.

We eagerly await a response from American Traffic Solutions and will keep you posted with what happens.


Australian Media Slams Redflex

August 12, 2010

It’s hard to find a mainstream media piece as perfect as this one. Enjoy the video and post your comments below.

Good: The lovely Tracy Grimshaw of A Current Affair asks the question of automated ticketing: “Life savers or just revenue raising cash cows?” CameraFRAUD as well as FireRedflex.com are mentioned in the story.

Better:

Quotes from the video: “Governments all around the world are in a lot of debt, they have to raise more money, and what better place to raise money than from penalties and speeding fines.”

“The cars are unmarked and there’s no warning sign until after you’ve driven past, and even then it’s tiny.”

REPORTER: “What do you do to pass the time when you’re sitting in here?”

REDFLEX DRIVER: “We watch the instrument.”

REPORTER: “And you need all three of you in here to do that?”

REDFLEX DRIVER: “That’s correct… at the moment…”

Best: The closing video of the UK show ‘Top Gear’ using a vehicle-mounted rocket launcher to take out a Gatso scam cam.


Oh, (no) Snap! Red Light for Red Light Cams

August 11, 2010

Orlando, Florida is now potentially on the hook for over $4 million in refunds after a judge rules the ticketing scheme to be invalid.

LaserCraft was the initial vendor for Orlando, until American Traffic Solutions purchased the Georgia company in June of this year. ATS has automated ticketing operations throughout Central and South Florida, as well as a vested interest in tolling.

In a rare example of honor among thieves, Redflex has refused to operate cameras in the Sunshine State, calling such operations “illegal.” (Update: No such thing as honor among thieves; Redflex proceeded to bid on contracts in Homestead, FL despite their own securities statement acknowledging such schemes to be illegal.)

Video: MyFoxOrlando: Red light cameras violate law.


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