SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Today’s number: 13,000

Friday, Jul 18, 2014

* Uh-oh

Thousands of Chicago drivers have been tagged with $100 red light fines they did not deserve, targeted by robotic cameras during a series of sudden spikes in tickets that city officials say they cannot explain, a Tribune investigation has found.

The Tribune’s analysis of more than 4 million tickets issued since 2007 and a deeper probe of individual cases revealed clear evidence that the deviations in Chicago’s network of 380 cameras were caused by faulty equipment, human tinkering or both.

More

A 10-month Tribune investigation documented more than 13,000 questionable tickets at 12 intersections that experienced the most striking spikes; similar patterns emerged at dozens of other intersections responsible for tens of thousands more tickets. Among the key findings:

Cameras that for years generated just a few tickets daily suddenly caught dozens of drivers a day. One camera near the United Center rocketed from generating one ticket per day to 56 per day for a two-week period last summer before mysteriously dropping back to normal.

Tickets for so-called rolling right turns on red shot up during some of the most dramatic spikes, suggesting an unannounced change in enforcement. One North Side camera generated only a dozen tickets for rolling rights out of 100 total tickets in the entire second half of 2011. Then, over a 12-day spike, it spewed 563 tickets — 560 of them for rolling rights.

Many of the spikes were marked by periods immediately before or after when no tickets were issued — downtimes suggesting human intervention that should have been documented. City officials said they cannot explain the absence of such records.

Go read the whole thing. Chicagoans tend to hate those red-light cams. If what the Tribune alleges is true, you can add one more horrible problem that Rahm Emanuel’s reelection campaign will have to deal with.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


19 Comments
  1. - Ravenswood Right Winger - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 9:56 am:

    Shortening yellow lights? It’s for the children! #SMH.


  2. - PublicServant - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 9:57 am:

    ===Chicagoans tend to hate those red-light cams.===

    The understatement of the year award winner!


  3. - John A Logan - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 9:59 am:

    The residents of Chicago should buy ladders and bolt cutters.


  4. - lake county democrat - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 9:59 am:

    Rich, any chance you could run the Sun-Times story on Judy Baar Topinka yesterday? I know she’s considered a saint by many (most?) of the commenters, but you’d be hard pressed to find a more rank example of Combine patronage at the expense of honest job applicants - given all the Hell Sheila Simon gets around here it’s worth reporting.


  5. - yo - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:03 am:

    The right candidate could beat Emanuel, I don’t care how much money the guy has. He is not liked by huge swaths of the city. This is the election to take him out too. Longer he stays more entrenched he becomes. Red light cameras are legalized thievery. pure and simple.


  6. - A guy... - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:08 am:

    They manipulated the cameras possibly (shorter yellows), manipulated the human element (changed policy in the human review of whether to cite or not). They can just as easily manipulate the adjudication process and wipe out all 13K tickets compliments of Rahm. That could turn a minus into a plus overnight. These things are terrible.


  7. - PMcP - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:12 am:

    To be honest, the existence of anomalies does not mean an issue exists , just that it should be investigated. For all we know, the two week period where ticket increases rose by the UC could coincide with the Pitchfork Music Festival at Union Park, which would make sense for the anomaly.

    Context please.


  8. - walker - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:16 am:

    Do the companies with this contract have a performance hurdle, like the Lottery folks do? or like the VA hospitals did? That can lead to unforeseen consequences.


  9. - siriusly - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:16 am:

    Sure it’s a few red light camera mistakes today, tomorrow it’s SkyNet.


  10. - William j Kelly - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:16 am:

    As if red light Rahm’s lie that these cameras are for public safety isn’t bad enough, Rahm’s double standard that the cameras don’t apply to him is enough to make Marie Antoinette look like a populist! A real city deserves a real mayor! Williamjkellyforchicago.com


  11. - Rich Miller - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:18 am:

    LCD, that was some goofy analysis, but you are also wrong on the point. I ran that piece the other day.


  12. - wordslinger - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:30 am:

    These cameras are government at its most cynical, not just here, but all over the country.

    The politicians lie to your face that it’s all about public safety when everyone knows it’s about revenue.

    Then some clouted-up firm gets the payday, by hook or by crook (apparently by crook in Chicago if the federales are right).

    You want to fight the tickets? Good luck. Take time off work, travel, etc., lots of folks just give up and pay to avoid the nuisance.

    If Karen Lewis is serious, she’d call a presser to announce she’d rip them off the poles if elected. Let Rahm spin why that’s not a good idea.


  13. - Hotel Ibiza - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:41 am:

    And Rahm wants to run and manage a Chicago Casino. What a hoot!


  14. - 47th Ward - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:51 am:

    I’ve seen groups of organized protesters at the red light cameras in my area, specifically at Western and Addison, on a regular basis. It didn’t look like some astro-turf, rent-a-protester thing either. These were regular folks who are mad as heck. They do not like these things at all and every ticket issued adds to a growing number of ticked off voters.


  15. - PMcP - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:54 am:

    Assuming the cameras operate effectively, why aren’t we upset that people continue to run red lights?


  16. - ZC - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:56 am:

    Heh, I believe it. This story is right on time. I think am one of these thousands of Chicago drivers.

    I might know where that North Side camera is that went berserk on those “rolling right” citations. Good to know I’m not alone here.


  17. - OneMan - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:31 am:

    Assuming the cameras operate effectively, why aren’t we upset that people continue to run red lights?

    Well that first part of your statement is sort of the key. because the statistics imply they either were not working effectively before or there was a period when they were not working effectively. It would be interesting to see the raw data, because if the cameras did ‘go quiet’ before the spikes, that is interesting also if they went quiet after the spikes.


  18. - Chris - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:56 am:

    “Chicagoans tend to hate those red-light cams.”

    Chicagoan. Who has gotten (and paid) a couple of red light tickets (for turns w/ merely 90% stops) and I *still* love ‘em. Get the revenue from people who aren’t willing to be careful enough, not from everyone just for the act of living in Chicago. No brainer, to me.

    The “it’s for the children” veneer is irritating, sure, but so what?


  19. - Bill - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 3:31 pm:

    This news story just reaffirms what I have long felt, and that is that I have zero confidence in these red light cameras. Ever since they saturated Chicago with all of these red light cameras, I have been driving to Chicago less frequently because no matter how skilled and conscientious a driver I may be, I don’ trust these cameras. I don’t need the headache of dealing with bogus tickets issued from faulty red light cameras.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* Reader comments closed for the weekend
* In which I agree with the governor
* Stuff you may not know about Illinois pensions
* It's just a bill
* Question of the day
* AG Madigan wants expansion of hate crime law
* Déjà vu all over again
* Rauner defends grand bargain parameters
* "We are proud to call him one of our own"
* Springfield holds its collective breath as strike talk mounts, budget impasse continues
* *** LIVE *** House session coverage
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Supplement to today’s edition
* Yesterday's stories

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............
<


Loading


* LaHood, Bustos could reach out more to voters d.....
* Our opinion: Hey, lawmakers! Budget mess not a .....
* Our opinion: Hey, lawmakers! Budget mess not a .....
* Op-ed: Overly generous compensation drives Illi.....
* The Sunday Spin: Politics with Rick Pearson Ful.....
* Democratic State Sen. Daniel Biss Inches Toward.....
* Rauner’s office: Gov spends 55% of Illinois nig.....
* Jim Dey: Thinking ahead, Ammons endorses Prussing..
* Highest pay in nation not good enough for Illin.....


* Parking near Wrigley Field about to get more expensive
* Tight budget might mean no sheriff's patrols on Rock River
* Authorities shooting deaths of 2 was murder-suicide
* Father of dead Navy SEAL refused to meet Trump at ceremony
* 2 young girls found dead after Chicago house fire
* Lawyer for ex-Rep. Jackson seeks shorter supervision period
* Urbana man who killed son pleads guilty to 2nd-degree murder
* School seminar near Chicago sparks civil rights, race debate
* 3rd suspect in shooting death of Chicago toddler denied bail
* Illinois man charged in Iowa killing of girl has trial moved

* Sanctuary issue draws dueling demonstrations to Capitol
* Rauner's office: Gov spends 55% of Illinois nights at Mansion
* Report: State senator's law firm dealings under scrutiny
* Durbin wants open look at Russian involvement in election
* Trump puts moderate GOP governors in awkward spot
* Economic stakes high for Springfield in labor showdown
* AFSCME authorizes strike, but still wants to bargain with Rauner
* AFSCME members authorize leaders to call strike
* Madigan forms Illinois House panel to address school funding
* Ex-U.S. Rep. Jackson gets about $138,400 in annual benefits

* Like our roundup? Share it around.
* For Chicago museums, it pays to be on public land
* Exelon hunts more state nuke subsidies following Illinois win
* Let's pass a law: No Illinois budget, no one gets re-elected
* After Seaway, what a true community bank looks like


* In era of great young shortstops, do Cubs have 2 of game’s best?
* Pregnant nominee Natalie Portman says she’ll skip Oscars
* White Sox tip Rockies 7-3 for first Cactus League victory
* CPS teachers on their own for basic classroom supplies
* Oscar Fashions: Whose wearing what; ribbons make a statement
* ‘The Columnist’ types tale of journalism in a different era
* Man killed in single-vehicle crash on Edens near Glencoe
* Only one Bulls player deserves to wear No. 1 … Jimmy Butler
* Fun and bonding in White Sox clubhouse
* Laura Washington: Trump transgender order ‘about being cruel’


* Police say more than 100 Jewish cemetery headstones damaged in Philadelphia
* Tyler Saladino battling for a job in crowded White Sox infield
* Police: Mardi Gras crash suspect's alcohol level 3 times legal limit
* Sunday's recap: Cubs 1, Indians 1
* Denzel Valentine, Nikola Mirotic making most of latest opportunities
* Man was drunk when his minivan hit, killed pedestrian in Lansing: Prosecutors
* Joe Maddon impressed with Jason Heyward's modified swing
* Did the 2011 White House correspondents' dinner spur Trump to run for president?
* 'Knock them right in the face': Baylor coach's tone-deaf message on sexual assault scandal
* 1 dead in crash on Edens near Tower Road


» Chicagoans Rally To Support Trans Rights After Trump Rescinds Student Protections
» Rauner Has Plan To Keep Government Running In Case Of Strike
» Congressman Rush Declares His Offices As Sanctuaries
» Weekend Funerals For Young Victims Of Chicago Violence
» CPS Relents, Returns $15 Million to Poorest Chicago Schools
» Doctors Discuss Alternatives To Opioids For Pain
» State Week: Will AFSCME Strike?
» Illinois Lawmakers: NEIU Student Workers Can Only Keep Jobs If State Passes Budget
» Civil Rights Investigation Into Cicero Schools Not Its First
» Indivisible Illinois Activists Concerned About Bobby Rush's Absence From Congress


* Sanctuary issue draws dueling demonstrations to Capitol
* Angie Muhs: It's time to name another Reader Advisory Board
* Bernard Schoenburg: Duckworth names 'thoughtful' former boss to downstate post
* Statehouse Insider: It's not the money, it's the appearance
* Our View: It's time for penance at the Capitol
* Rauner's office: Gov spends 55% of Illinois nights at Mansion
* Community Foundation: Sister's legacy lives on through scholarship fund
* Report: State senator's law firm dealings under scrutiny
* Durbin wants open look at Russian involvement in election
* Charles Krauthammer: Trump and the ‘Madman Theory’


* SIUE’s Venessa Brown receives 2017 Insight Into Diversity Giving Back Award
* LIVE! Nebraska
* Pedestrian killed in Oakland
* Alex Heeb can be reached at 618-208-6451 or on Twitter @alexheebs.
* Calhoun commissioners examine burn bans
* Midland looks at adding ag tech classes
* Two dead in murder/suicide in Herrin
* Father of slain Navy SEAL from Peoria refused meeting with Trump
* ENGAGEMENT
* ANNIVERSARY


* IN Current Conditions
* Police say drunk driver caused Mardi Gras crash that hurt 28
* Leonard scores 25, leads Spurs to 119-98 rout of Lakers
* Parking near Wrigley Field about to get more expensive
* Greenwell sparks No. 13 Duke women 95-71 over Tar Heels

* Protesters converge on US Rep. Randy Hultg...
* GOP congressman appears to distance himsel...
* US Representative Randy Hultgren visits ne...
* Hultgren criticizes immigration ban, Roska...
* Hultgren to join veterans' forum at Geneva...
* Hultgren to participate in veterans forum ...
* Protesters Demand Town Hall Meetings From ...
* Majority of IL Congressional Delegation Op...
* Group upset with Trump wants Town Hall mee...
* US Congressman tours new Aurora Specialty ...

* Political math is not economic math - Wash......
* Durbin wants open look at Russian involvem......

* Senator Duckworth discusses infrastructure......

* This morning students at Swarthmore College are sitting-in, demanding that the administration divest in fossil fuel.
* Democratic Party suicide?
* Maryville East Coming Down Quickly
* #LibertysPromise
* The Democratic establishment.
* 81% of AFSCME Illinois state workers vote for strike authorization.
* Reading and slave insurrection.
* You’re not welcome here.
* Mem Fox’s read-aloud commandments.
* A win for Illinois special education students. We’re not done yet. Contact your Illinois legislators now.


* Governor Bruce Rauner Honors Carnegie Hero From Buffalo Grove
* Governor Addresses State Board of Education to Emphasize Importance of Strong Accountability Standards
* Stars and Legends to Perform at 2017 Illinois State Fair - First Round of Grandstand Headliners Announced for Springfield Fair
* Earthquake Education Kiosk Unveiled at University Mall in Carbondale - IEMA, Central U.S. Earthquake Consortium project will help southern Illinois residents reduce damage, injuries from earthquakes
* Governor Takes Bill Action

  
* MWC 2017: Google Assistant Expands Beyond Pixel to New Android Smartphones
* Google Photos is getting an ad spot during the Oscars
* Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 specifications
* Major U.S. carriers confirm LG G6 availability this spring
* The whole world is officially invited to witness the March 29 Galaxy S8 ‘Unpacking’ in NYC
* Watch Samsung’s first teaser for the Galaxy S8 launching in March
* Samsung’s Galaxy S8 debuting in New York City on March 29 at Unpacked event

* Asche gets White Sox started in Quintana's debut
* Collins, Moncada make Sox debuts in Cactus opener
* Fulmer looks to keep learning throughout spring
* Fulmer's strong start highlights Cactus opener
* Fulmer's strong start highlights Cactus opener
* White Sox trio nursing injuries as spring play begins
* Quintana eager to face USA, teammates in Classic


Main Menu
Home
Illinois
YouTube
Pundit rankings
Obama
Subscriber Content
Durbin
Burris
Blagojevich Trial
Advertising
Updated Posts
Polls

Archives
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004

Blog*Spot Archives
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005

Syndication

RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0
WordPress




Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller