Maui News

Red-light enforcement cameras could be coming to Maui

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PC: Kehaulani Cerizo

The red-light enforcement camera program that launched recently on Oʻahu could be heading to Maui, but the pilot plan will have to be evaluated first, according to the state Department of Transportation. 

Called the Red-Light Safety Camera Program, the project is authorized by Act 30 and aims to reduce traffic fatalities by deterring the running of red lights, state DOT said in a news release. 

The two-year pilot program began last month with engineering studies to select 10 Oʻahu intersections for enforcement.

After the Oʻahu program is evaluated, the red-light enforcement plan could be extended to other islands. 

“HDOT will assess the effectiveness of the program in improving safety along with traffic safety partners such as the Honolulu Police Department and the Prosecutor’s Office,” DOT spokeswoman Shelly Kunishige told Maui Now. “Based on the results of the pilot the Red-Light Safety Program may be implemented in other locations.” 

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Kunishige said that the Go Akamai cameras to monitor traffic on Oʻahu and Maui are not the same cameras that will be used for the Red-Light Safety Camera Program. Currently, there are 26 Go Akamai cameras at intersections on Maui and nearly 300 on O’ahu.  

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A photo red-light imaging detector systems program is allowed in Maui, Hawaiʻi, Kauaʻi and Honolulu counties, according to Act 30, which was approved Sept. 15, 2020.  

The law also authorizes the deposit of fines collected under county programs to go toward a special fund, which would be spent by the DOT in the county where the fine occurred. Money would go toward the establishment, operation, management and maintenance of the photo red-light imaging detector systems program. 

Oʻahu’s engineering studies to decide which intersections will get automated enforcement with Red-Light Safety Camera Program is expected to be finished next month.  

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After that, program officials will put up signage about the presence of automated enforcement, install the camera systems and train personnel to review images and issue warnings. 

The 10 sites with enforcement will be selected based on crash history and site suitability. Studies will also identify conditions that may contribute to red-light running violations and appropriate countermeasures.  

“Running red lights is a major contributing factor to urban crashes nationwide,” state DOT Deputy Director for Highways Ed Sniffen said in a news release. “Our goal for the two-year pilot is to make our streets safer by changing driver behavior.” 

Kehaulani Cerizo
Kehaulani Cerizo was born and raised on Maui and worked for nearly 15 years as a news reporter, copy editor and features editor at daily newspapers. She earned awards at The Maui News in Wailuku and at Today’s Local News in San Diego.
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