Growing up, you probably learn that red means stop, and green means go. That is certainly true when you are behind the wheel of a car, and if you encounter a red stop light, it is important for you to stop. If a cop sees you going through the intersection when the light is red, you are prone to getting a traffic ticket. What happens if there is not a cop present? You may feel like you have gotten away with it, but you might be photographed by a red light camera. This is a traffic enforcement mechanism that photographs a vehicle that has entered the intersection when the light is red. If it catches a picture of your license plate, you could receive a ticket.
A red light camera has been specifically designed to capture vehicles when they enter an intersection when the light is red. If you enter an intersection when the light is yellow, and the light turns red after you have entered the intersection, then it should not take a picture of your license plate, and you should not receive a ticket. Because a red light camera records what happens, you may be able to fight a traffic ticket by asking for footage of the video. If you can prove that the light was not red when you entered the intersection, then you might have a successful defense against a red light ticket.
Because traffic accidents are incredibly common in the United States, states are taking measures to enforce traffic laws strictly. Therefore, there are dozens of states across the country that already have red light cameras. So far, there are a total of 23 states that have red light cameras. Alabama, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Missouri New Mexico, New York, and North Carolina allow their use in only specific jurisdictions. Other states—Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Virginia, and Washington—allow red light cameras to be used statewide.
Additionally, twelve states have no law that explicitly makes the use of red light cameras illegal. It is possible that red light cameras could expand to the entire country in the near future. It is critical for people to know what these cameras look like, and nobody should go through an intersection if the light is red.
If you are caught going through an intersection when the light is red, you could get a traffic ticket. The size of the traffic ticket is going to depend on where you were located, how fast you were going when you entered the intersection, and how many tickets you have received in the past. In addition, it could be considered a moving violation, and that means that your car insurance could go up. Therefore, it is critical for you to be as safe as possible when you are behind the wheel. If you get a red light ticket, you may want to reach out to a traffic attorney who can help you fight it.
Red Light Camera Legality
Ticket Affects Insurance
|Alaska||No state law|
|Arkansas||No state law|
|Connecticut||No state law|
|Florida||Legal||Statewide||Varies by insurance company|
|Hawaii||Legal||Counties of Hawaii, Maui, Kauai, Honolulu and City of Honolulu||Yes|
|Idaho||No state law|
|Indiana||No state law|
|Kansas||No state law|
|Massachusetts||No state law|
|Michigan||No state law|
|Nebraska||No state law|
|New Mexico||Legal||Specified jurisdictions||Yes|
|New York||Legal||Specified jurisdictions||No|
|North Carolina||Legal||Specified jurisdictions||No|
|Utah||No state law|
|Vermont||No state law|
|Wyoming||No state law|