Encinitas to keep red light cameras

August 12, 2018 by  

Recently, Encinitas’s Traffic and Public Safety Commission voted to keep the red light cameras in the city in use, making it one of the few communities in the area still using the devices. Encinitas currently has two cameras, one at the intersection of Encinitas Boulevard and El Camino Real; the other at the intersection of Olivenhain Road-Leucadia Boulevard and El Camino Real. The cameras, which were put in place between 2004 and 2005, take photos of drivers who run red lights at the observed intersections.

Although the cameras are not universally popular, an analysis by the Abraham Bandegan, the City Traffic Engineer, revealed that accidents at the Encinitas Boulevard/El Camino Real intersection have dropped by 45%, while at Olivenhain Road-Leucadia Boulevard/El Camino Real, they’re down 32%. They also bring in between $250,000 and $300,000 per year in fines, enough to cover the cost of operation, which is $195,000 annually.

Brian Anderson, a resident of Encinitas, like the cameras, saying it’s great they reduce accidents and don’t cost much money. Opponents, though, say the cameras make some drivers nervous, and they brake hard. Bandegan says his studies have shown a slight increase in rear-enders, but on balance, the number of accidents is going down.

The city council still has to vote on whether to enter into another three-year contract for the cameras.

Officials dealing with matters like this can use poster printing to keep residents informed.