7/22/2005London Giving Camera Tickets for Blocking Intersections
London, UK cameras issue US$8.7 million in tickets for being trapped in an intersection.
Being trapped in the middle of a London intersection could cost £100 (US $174) as a photo ticket pilot program draws to a successful conclusion. Transport for London is expanding the number of traffic violations for which automated CCTV cameras will send expensive citations in the mail. During a test period, London authorities issued £5 million (US $8.7 million) worth of the tickets to motorists apparently blocking an intersection. The test only covered six of the city's twenty-seven boroughs.
British "yellow box junctions" use bright painted lines to indicate where motorists should never stop their vehicle. But some believe the cameras can't distinguish between someone who's intentionally blocking traffic and someone who's trapped.
"There are times when people believe they have space to cross a junction but perhaps get trapped by another car changing lane," Association of British Drivers spokesman Peter Morgan explained to the Croydon Advertiser. "This is very difficult to prove from a static picture of a box junction which makes it easy pickings for fines. As far as I'm aware, there is little evidence to show this will significantly improve journey times and reduce traffic jams."
In the next few months, provisions of the Transport Act 2000 will take effect authorizing London-style CCTV traffic enforcement throughout the country. Already, London bus lane violations generated 426,000 citations and more than £30 million (US $52 million) in revenue.