Failure to obey traffic signals is one of the primary causes of crashes at intersections. According to preliminary estimates by the Federal Highway Administration in 2001there were approximately 218,000 crashes at intersections that are caused by drivers who run red lights.
In an effort to remedy this national epidemic, The State of Maryland passed a law in April 1997 that went into effect in October 1997 (Transportation Article 21-202.1) that allows the use of Automated Enforcement by law enforcement agencies. Automated Enforcement detects and identifies violators of the law without the dependency of a police presence. This allows police officers to focus on other urgent community needs. In addition, Automated Enforcement is proven to reduce the number of red light violations by 40 percent.
As we continue to strive to reduce motor vehicle collisions, especially those occurring at intersections, the Prince George's County Police Department has implemented the latest new camera technology used for red light safety. These cameras have the ability to record multiple violations occurring at the same time. The cameras capture clear photos of the violating vehicles along with a 12-second video clip of the violations.
With this new technology, in addition to our current enforcement of the steady red signal, we will also conduct enforcement of the Maryland Traffic Law 21-202, right turn on red without stopping. These cameras only activate after the traffic signal has turned red. The Police Department is in the process of changing out the older red light cameras and replacing with the new technology red light cameras.