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Emergency Vehicles & Red Light Cameras . . .


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#1 NickD

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Posted 20 August 2007 - 03:33 PM

Emergency Vehicles & Red Light Cameras . . .

Here's something I never considered before and the following piece makes the point. Basically it concerns the thinking that people would be afraid to move into an intersection, in order to yield to an emergency vehicle, where a red light camera is installed.

I don't think it would be too hard to correlate the time the emergency vehicle passed through the intersection to the time the ticket was issued, but a motorist's first thought would be to avoid the automatic $341 ticket (here in California.) So that doesn't solve the initial problem.

BTW, I'm just finishing up the clinical portion of a Phlebotomy class and I really enjoyed it. (Our class motto is, "We stick together . . .") :wink:

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#2 Ruffmeister Paramedic

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Posted 20 August 2007 - 04:43 PM

I never really thought of that. What woudl the fine be if they didn't move out of the way and got a citation for failure to yield to an emergency vehicle.

I'm sure there are ways to get around this. Don't the cameras take a picture of the entire lanes of traffic?
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#3 NickD

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Posted 20 August 2007 - 07:53 PM

From what I could find on the net the fines for not yielding to an emergency vehicle in California are indeed cheaper than getting a red light ticket. The first offence fine for not yielding is between $100 - $250 and the red light ticket can be as high as $370.

Here's a Q&A from a California law website FAQ:

Question: What if I had to run the signal, because of a tailgater, road-rager, sirens, medical emergency, etc.?

Answer: This is a legitimate defense, but doesn't work very often. A lot of people tell the judge that there was a siren behind them. Because they have heard it so much, the judges won't take anyone's word for it. <<

It goes on to say you'd need a copy of the agencies' run report and a third party eye witness to have a hope.

>>Don't the cameras take a picture of the entire lanes of traffic?<<

I'm not sure, but I doubt if the emergency vehicle would show if was several car lengths (or further) behind you.

This is clearly a case of the law working against itself.

NickD :)
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#4 Ruffmeister Paramedic

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Posted 20 August 2007 - 08:18 PM

sounds like a bad deal all around but I think you could make a case if you got a lawyer and all that.

I guess that you could request a trial by jury which we are all allowed even with a traffic ticket.

Get enough sympathetic jurors you might just beat it.
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#5 speedygodzilla

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Posted 20 August 2007 - 09:35 PM

Makes a great point. I believe the cameras here in KC record 24/7 so that too caught the whole story. I am not sure. I am not even sure if they use them for tickets yet. If a EMV with lights and siren was behind me I would go through and than quickly write down the vehicles number in case it became an issue down the road.

I am not quite sure I like the whole road cam thing.
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