Reader responds to Sugar Land regarding Red Light Cameras

Hon. Sugar Land Mayor and Council,

Hardly anyone disputes that the presence of red light cameras increases rear-enders, but as to t-bone accidents there’s no agreement.  We often see statistics claiming large reductions of t-bones with cameras, but those statistics, done by the IIHS or police who have a stake in the outcome, don’t stand up to even casual audit by professional statisticians.

Mark Twain commented:  “Figures often beguile me, particularly when I have the arranging of them myself; in which case the remark attributed to Disraeli would often apply with justice and force: ‘There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.'”

I have to agree with Twain and Disraeli:  We should not bet our lives on statistical studies from either side, just because the studies are numerous or appear to be independent.  But I am in California where we have had cameras for a long time (we started in 1997 and once had programs in 105 cities, now down to 52), so I can receive guidance from my local officials who, after years of hands-on experience with the camera, have chosen to speak out.

For direct quotes from twenty such officials (police chiefs, mayors) admitting that cameras don’t work, go here:


J. Lissner

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Posted by on Feb 12 2014. Filed under Letters, Sugar Land. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

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