Citations to start going out for red light runners

July 22, 2011 2:10:24 PM PDT
There's new information about the controversial red light cameras at intersections across Houston. We now know exactly when red light runners will be ticketed again now that those cameras are back on.

Houston voters didn't want them, but that hasn't stopped the city from turning them back on. And ever since, we've been asking when the tickets will return. On Thursday, we finally got the answer.

With little fanfare, Houston Police Chief Charles McClelland announced that those red light cameras that were on, off and then on again will begin capturing images for citations by next week.

"As of 12:01am July 24, the Houston Police Department will start issuing citations to motorists who run red lights," said Chief McClelland.

As a key part of the announcement, the chief says he's decided there will be no retroactive tickets. That means even though the cameras were turned back on by Mayor Annise Parker earlier this month, no retroactive tickets will be issued.

The news of the tickets starting again didn't sway the minds of Houston drivers, who remain split on the cameras.

"I think they're pretty useful," said driver Lara Hoober. "They're good to have to prevent people from running through yellow lights and stuff like that."

"I got a ticket a year and a half ago," said driver Bary Boyd.

"You never paid it? we asked.

"No, I never will," he said.

But the issue is pretty straightforward for the police chief. His officers are already stretched. This, the chief says, will help him keep Houstonians safe.

"The cameras can work 24 hours a day, seven days a week," he said. "The camera does not complain about being cold, hot. The camera can work in the rain and the camera does not submit an overtime slip."

There are police officers taking a look at the photos before tickets are sent out.


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