City to Study Best Locations for Red Light Cameras in Windsor

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City council is taking another step toward adding red light cameras and photo radar at intersections across Windsor.

After much discussion Monday night, council has asked administration to put together a report on the best locations for the cameras.

Councillor Fabio Costante made the motion and says, while the cameras are quite costly, you can't put a price on safety. 

"Windsor police can't be everywhere all the time. Speeding and enforcement of speeding is not a top priority when you look at a lot of the challenges we have in our city and a lot of the challenges that police have. So this is a way to fill that gap," he says.

Costante says the red light cameras don't put an end to all crashes, but in other cities where they've been installed, collisions are less severe.

"For example, red light cameras induce more rear-end collisions. Even if we accepted that, we know also that red light cameras reduce side collisions, which are more fatal and cause more serious injury which contribute to what is called the societal costs," he says.

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Windsor city councillor Fabio Costante on May 6, 2019 (Photo by AM800's Zander Broeckel)

Eight municipalities already have the red-light camera system in place at an annual cost of up to $90,000 per camera. Those communities are Toronto, London, Waterloo, Ottawa, Hamilton, Halton, Peel and York Region.

Costante says in other cities, the cameras are paying for themselves through ticket revenue.

"Every municipality that's installed these cameras, they've either cost recovered or have made money off of them," he says. "That's not the primary intent of council or the city, to make money, but I know it's a bit of a contentious issue in the community. At the end of the day it's really about speed calming and making our streets safer."

Costante is hoping the report on possible locations comes back before the city's 2020 budget deliberations.