Denton Activates Six New Red Light Cameras

By Brian Scott
|  Tuesday, Jan 7, 2014  |  Updated 10:02 AM CDT
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If you drive in Denton, you'll want to pay close attention and obey red lights, six new red light cameras have gone up at some of the most heavily traveled intersections and two more go in this week.

Brian Scott, NBC 5 Denton County Reporter

If you drive in Denton, you'll want to pay close attention and obey red lights, six new red light cameras have gone up at some of the most heavily traveled intersections and two more go in this week.

By the end of the week Denton will have six new red light cameras online and able to ticket drivers.

New automated enforcement cameras are already up at Fort Worth Drive and southbound Interstate 35E Frontage Road and Loop 288 & Spencer northbound. There are also two new cameras at Loop 288 & Lilian Miller at the I-35E Frontage Road going both east and westbound.

Crews are also working this week to add two cameras going east and westbound on University at the I-35 Frontage Road.

The six new cameras join several other existing ones that have been live for a while in Denton. Ryan Grelle, with the Denton Police Department, said the success of those cameras lead to the additions.

"We've dropped violations 14 percent from year 2011," said Grelle, of the locations that already have photo enforcement.

Even as a worker setup one of the new cameras on Loop 288 Monday, a driver rolled down his window to shout his displeasure at the decision to add more auto enforcement.

Several Denton drivers said they still don’t believe the cameras are anything more than a way for the city to make money.

"It's strictly just a revenue source for the city and, ya know, I don't like it,” said driver David Michael.

Police stand firm saying that is not the case.

"That is not what we use it for,” said Grelle. “We want to stop the violations and also keep people safe."

The red light cameras are operated by an outside company that works with the city on enforcement. Grelle said when it takes a picture of a potential red light violator the company forwards it to the police department for review, and only if an officer agrees that it is a violation is a ticket than sent out to the person to whom the car is registered.

Grelle adds that the ticket is a civil ticket and not a criminal one; meaning it does not go on a person’s record.

"Come to a complete stop and that way you won't be hit with a red light ticket,” he said.

One Denton driver who was actually paying a ticket for a red light violation Monday said he agrees with the cameras as a safety tool.

"People will be self-conscious when they're trying to run the red light, so I guess it's safer for innocent people,” said Hector Sifuentes.

Another driver said while she does not agree with the cameras, or like them, she plans to be prepared for them.

“Really, what can you do?” said Alondra Perez. “You can't really do anything about it so you kind of have to just make the best of it."

Grelle said all of the cameras will have “Photo Enforced” signs put in place before they go active. However unlike many roll-outs there will be no grace period with the new cameras and confirmed violations will result in a $75 ticket issued immediately.

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