The chances of being caught running a red light double from today as all of Auckland's 12 red light safety cameras are enforcing following a new agreement between Auckland Transport and New Zealand Police.
The new agreement ensures all 12 of Auckland's red light safety cameras are operational and enforcing at any one time rather than having six operating on a rotational basis as was previously the case.
The new agreement follows concerns raised by the Mayor and Councillor Chris Darby when it was found that only half of Auckland's twelve red light safety cameras could be operational at any one time.
Mayor Phil Goff welcomes the agreement saying, "Red light running results in innocent people being smashed into, maimed and killed. It is irresponsible and illegal.
"Red light cameras are proven to reduce crashes and save lives. Having all cameras operating in hot spots around Auckland is a big deterrent. It will help reduce red light running and make our roads safer.
"Until now, limited police resources meant only six cameras could be enforced at the same time. That's not good enough. With all 12 cameras operational we have maximum enforcement and a real deterrent to those people running red lights and placing lives in danger.
"Within five years the number of cameras in place will increase to 42 helping change the culture that running reds is okay and there are no consequences.
"I am pleased that Auckland Transport and NZ Police have worked collaboratively together to ensure every camera will be operational and every offender will receive infringement penalties.
"Red light cameras are about saving lives, not making money. That's why we're telling everyone where the cameras are so people don't run reds. I'd be happy if not a single dollar was collected from fines, it would mean we were changing behaviour and protecting Aucklanders from injury and death.
"With deaths and serious injuries increasing on Auckland roads by 78 per cent in the last four years, three times the national average, we have to change driver attitudes.
"That's why we are installing more red light cameras and investing $700 million in additional road safety measures across Auckland over the coming decade," he says.
Planning Committee Chair Chris Darby says each day, one person is killed or seriously injured on Auckland's roads.
"This death and injury rate must come down, and council is committed to doing whatever it takes to make that happen," he says.
"When our roads are safer, everyone wins. It's great to see Police and Auckland Transport come together and pull out the stops to achieve common goals for Auckland."
AT Chief Executive Shane Ellison says the new agreement will include enforcement on all new red light safety cameras installed as part of AT's work to improve road safety and reduce death and serious injury on Auckland's roads, which is funded by the Regional Fuel Tax.
"We are bringing forward our red light safety camera programme delivery to make our highest risk intersections safer. This is one programme of many that we are delivering to reduce road trauma.
"We intend to have 42 cameras in total installed in the next five years, instead of 10 years as originally proposed. They are an effective tool to improve road safety at intersections and we are committed to working closely with NZ Police on delivering this programme.
"Six more cameras will be installed at high-risk intersections by June this year."
Superintendent Steve Greally, National Manager for Road Policing, says Police and Auckland Transport have been working hard together to get to this point.
"We are happy to support AT in this road safety venture. It will not only enforce risky driving behaviour but also act as a deterrent so people will stop gambling with their lives, and everybody else's, on the road.
"As Police, we see first-hand the horrific outcomes of people running red lights. Why someone would take that risk just to save a bit of time is beyond me.
"You could hit a child crossing the road or another car going through a green light. Could you live with yourself?"
AT owns and installs the red light safety cameras and NZ Police has responsibility for enforcement. Money from infringements goes to the Crown's National Consolidated Fund.
When red light cameras were trialled in Auckland between 2008 and 2010, there was a 43 per cent reduction in red light running and an average 63 per cent decrease in crashes attributable to red light running.
Red light safety cameras are enforcing at the following intersections:
- Albany Highway/Oteha Valley Road
- Blockhouse Bay Road/ New North Road
- Esmonde Road/ Fred Thomas Drive
- Great North Road and Rata Street
- Great North Road/ Karangahape Road
- Great South Road and Cavendish Drive – two cameras
- Great South Road and Reagan Road
- Lincoln Road/ Swanson Road
- Lincoln Road/ Te Pai Place
- Te Irirangi Drive and Accent Drive – two cameras*