A new analysis by Case Western Reserve University finds that red light cameras do little to reduce accidents at the intersections where they are installed.
Researchers examined data from Houston over a 12-year period, during which the city ended its red light camera program.
One of the study’s authors, Justin Gallagher, said he was motivated by the controversy around them in Ohio. Gallagher said the findings show that drivers are more likely to brake suddenly when the cameras are present.
“There was no discernable effect on improving safety," he said. "There was sort of offsetting effects of two different accidents types, and on net, roads were not anymore safe under a red light camera program.”
According to the study, more than 400 communities around the United States have red light cameras.
Earlier this year, Ohio lawmakers considered a bill to punish cities that use those cameras.