Cities across the state are rushing to install red-light cameras as a way to make money, er, catch offenders. An investigation is underway in Richland Hills, suggesting the “yellow” warning light has been shortened, so more people will get caught running the red-light. But such trickery could also be costing people their lives.

Why would anyone want to reduce the “yellow” time? Well, let’s see, the cities make a nice bit of change on the deal, as do the camera companies.

But this is no joking matter, Fox News in Dallas reports that “The Texas Transportation Institute found shortening yellow times by one second increased crashes between 125 and 225 percent at studied intersections.” That’s where a few extra bucks in city revenues costs more than money, it costs lives.

According to Fox News, “In June, July, and August … video tape showed the yellow light at three seconds, the camera cited 4738 people for running a red light. But after the city lengthened the yellow to 3.5 seconds, citations dropped 88%. Only 569 people got cited in September, October and November.”

Michael Quinn Sullivan

Michael Quinn Sullivan is the publisher of Texas Scorecard. He is a native Texan, a graduate of Texas A&M, and Eagle Scout. Previously, he has worked as a newspaper reporter, magazine contributor, Capitol Hill staffer, think tank vice president. Michael and his wife have three adult children, and a dog. Check out his podcast, Reflections on Life and Liberty.

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