The city is about to get a camera to catch red light-runners – the first since the 1990s.
The camera is being installed at the Bealey Ave and Madras St intersection, but will move around the city’s “high risk” intersections, city council acting head of transport Mark Pinner said.
“The list of intersections and how long the camera will remain in one place has yet to be decided,” he said.
The camera records vehicles travelling through the intersection, the footage is then put through software, which detects red light-running incidents.
Police and the city council are investigating enforcement options, Mr Pinner said, but he said it would be run on the same model as cameras currently used in Wellington and Auckland.
“Council will be informing motorists about red light camera enforcement, and signage will be part of that information.”
He said the city council has launched the campaign to reduce numbers, as crashes at signalised intersections are a “really significant” road safety problem in the city.
“Traffic signal crashes are close to a quarter of all crashes in the city, with a social cost of about $27 million per year.
“Red light-running is a part of the problem and needs to be addressed,’’ Mr Pinner said.
Acting road policing manager Senior Sergeant Kelly Larsen said red light-running incidents were too high.
“More drivers than we would like enter intersections on orange lights. These often change to red while the driver is still in the intersection, creating an unnecessary road safety risk,” she said.
It comes with the release of a report from traffic engineering consultants ViaStrada – Factors influencing red light running – a Christchurch investigation – which said the proportion of red light-running crashes in Christchurch is “very high” compared with other cities.
“Red light-running crashes account for approximately 35 per cent of all injury crashes at signalised intersections in Christchurch . . . this proportion of red light-running crashes is very high compared to the crash patterns exhibited in other cities,” the report said.
“It’s historically been a real issue
. . . and it is an issue that keeps coming up,” report author and ViaStrada senior traffic engineer and transport planner Glen Koorey said.
He said there were a “number of factors” that lead drivers to run red lights, including attitude, the type of intersection, visibility and driver distraction.
“There’s a mix of things that might work to reduce the numbers,” Dr Koorey said.
A red light-running road safety campaign is also being investigated, Mr Pinner said.
The worst intersections for red
•Moorhouse Ave/Colombo St: 666
•Chalmers St/Goulding Ave/Main South Rd:
•Johns Rd/Main North Rd: 574
•Riccarton Rd/Rimu St: 557
•Clyde Rd/Creyke Rd/Kotare St: 528
•Heaton St/Innes Rd/Papanui Rd: 514
•Blenheim Rd/Matipo St: 495
•Langdons Rd/Main North Rd/Mary St: 467
•Buchanans Rd/Carmen Rd: 462
•Brougham St/Garlands Rd/Opawa Rd: 456