Red Light Camera Fine $324: Welcome to the Police State
Is this one photo enough evidence to find a driver guilty of running a red light?
*Note: I have a second photo which shows the car through the intersection
What happened to the idea of innocent until proven guilty? It appears that in the case of traffic infringements it's guilty until the offending party proves that they are innocent.
And how can you prove your innocent? Well if you wish to dispute the matter on the penalty notice you are pleasantly suggested that you may wish to consider your options to have the penalty notice decided in court where a magistrate can impose a range of penalties or decide to show leniency after considering the evidence. Revenue raising do you say? Never, it's all in the name of safety, don't be so cynical!
In NSW it appears as through the State Debt Recovery will not overturn a fine even though it is unable to present conclusive evidence showing the offending vehicle with all wheels behind stop line (the 1st horizontal line) and the red signal displayed, and a subsequent photo of the same car completely entered into the intersection. This is unusual considering this is exactly what is available to those that run red light cameras in the United States.
After numerous email queries, and ambiguous responses regarding the evidence produced against me, I was advised the photographs clearly show the vehicle entering the intersection after the light had turned red. Moreover, traffic lights remain on amber for at least four seconds to warn motorists to stop and that when a vehicle passes over a metal-sensitive loop at the stop line it activates the camera (albeit with a lengthy delay, in camera operation terms, it seems). To activate the camera, the RTA (Road and Traffic Authority) advises, that a vehicle must cross the stop line and proceed through the intersection after the light has turned red. The camera first takes a photograph of the rear of the vehicle and then a second photograph is taken to confirm the vehicle has travelled through the intersection. Which leaves me with another question, can these road sensors for the red light camera distinguish between the front and rear wheels of the car crossing the stop line?
What ever happened to the notion of 'beyond reasonable doubt'?
In the words of Mr Bumble, from Charles Dickens' Oliver Twist, "the law is an ass".
Update - July 2013:
TRAFFIC CONTROL LIGHTS
Not stop before lights at red light $405
3 Demerit Points
Road Rules 2008 - Rule 56 (1)(c)