No response from Bellevue on killing people

w/r/t installing traffic cams without other changes, which will increase accidents

I don’t get it. If you’re going to make traffic changes, particularly large ones which might in a real sense kill people, doesn’t that require some degree of caution, vigilance, and willingness to listen to other thoughts? They should at least have said “oh we’ve got that covered” or “we looked at that and you’re full of it” or “we’ll check this out”.

If nothing else, people who get rear-ended in accidents at newly-camera-ed intersections will be able to sue the city, and that’s not going to go well.

2 thoughts on “No response from Bellevue on killing people

  1. Taryn

    Are you actually suggesting that affirming the need to abide by signals is more dangerous than letting people do whatever they want? You’re not serious, right? Please forgive me if I’ve misunderstood your comment, but living in a neighborhood where people routinely ignore signs and signals, I can confirm for you that it’s not safer. A red light means stop, not stop if you’re in a bigger hurry than everyone else…..

  2. DMZ Post author

    That’s not my point at all, sorry if that’s at all how it read. Let me try this a different way:

    You put up traffic lights and signals as part of a system to make things run well. Speed limits exist to save lives. It’s all a tradeoff.

    Let’s say you have a problem four-way intersection and you decide to put up stop signs that are… 10% larger. And they make people stop more often. You reduce accidents caused by running straight through the intersection. But the reflective coating now blinds drivers in the perpendicular direction to the sign and causes them to run through the intersection and get into accidents, run over pedestrians, and so on.

    So as a net, the super signs result in, say, 25% fewer accidents overall, but you hugely increase the number of horrible, fatal accidents, so injuries and deaths are way up.

    This is what I’m saying. If you put traffic enforcement cameras up, you will win at things like “how many people run the light?” and, if done by itself, you can hugely run up the number of rear-end collisions. Making people tear through yellows *even faster* because they’re super-scared of getting dinged by the camera doesn’t help anyone, and people who decide not to risk it often get creamed by people behind them who are trying to tear through the yellow.

    If more people get hurt and die because a red light camera goes up, that’s bad. If putting red light cameras up and lengthening the yellows means you get a reduction in people running reds, fewer accidents, and so on, that’s the best outcome, and that’s what I want them to look at.

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