Miami-Dade Circuit Court Judge Jerald Bagley has issued an Order finding that a Miami-Dade County town cannot issue citations based upon evidence from red-light cameras. Essentially, Judge Bagley found that the red-light cameras could not be used to replace a law enforcement officer issuing a traffic citation based upon a violation of Florida law. The judge ruled that only the State of Florida can pass traffic laws. Cities around Florida have been trying to avoid this by issuing city code violations instead of formal traffic tickets. This practice may have to end.
This issue is far from dead. Florida legislators have shown an interest in passing a state-wide law approving the use of red-light cameras. Legislators see these tickets as a cost-effective way to raise revenue as the proposed law requires local governments to share the revenue from new red-light camera violations with the State.
Drivers running red lights are a huge safety issue. Drivers running through yellow or red lights can cause serious car accidents resulting in spinal injuries, brain injuries, broken bones or scarring. Red-light camera seem like a reasonable way to encourage drivers to stop at red lights as they are supposed to.