They save lives
A little more than a year ago a member of our extended family was broadsided by a red-light runner in Michigan. Nothing strikes closer to home than when someone you know, someone with a lot of life to live, is seriously injured or killed by the thoughtless action of an irresponsible person. She survived but has gone through an incredible ordeal in her recovery and will never have the youthful gait that she has been robbed of.
Seriously, some of our American families feel entitled -- entitled to text while driving, speed when in a hurry, talk on cell phones, tempt fate by stepping on the gas when the light turns yellow and, the most egregious of all, fail to use turn signals. My best friend was killed by a thoughtless speeder on a parkway ramp seven years ago.
I am encouraged that Pittsburgh City Council is considering the installation of red-light cameras at the most dangerous intersections. The point isn't to fine the violators but to prevent pointless injuries and death. Red-light cameras work. They change driver behavior, reduce illegal red-light running and save lives. That's a fact. Philadelphia has installed them and the data proves that they work.
I'm an avid cyclist. I take every precaution to ensure my safety when I ride on the road. I want to know officials are doing the same. Pittsburgh has made great strides to make the city bike-friendly. Still, more can be done. Red-light cameras are another option.
The lifestyle that encourages cycling is important to our region. Red-light cameras don't just make our streets safer. They make our city more livable, too.
DANIEL A. KARACZUN
It's about revenue
Red-light cameras are for generating revenue, not public safety. Statistics have long shown that accidents at these intersections significantly increase because of drivers jamming on their brakes at yellow lights.
My opinion is to let other cities extort money from the public using this means. We don't need any new reasons to avoid driving through Pittsburgh.