Each violation is reviewed by the Operator for accuracy and other related variables. During Photo Enforcement Operations, the City of Edmonton set the enforcement threshold in order to target drivers travelling above the posted speed limit.
The purpose of tickets is to hurt the pocketbook so that drivers say "ouch" and change their driving behaviour. If drivers slow down only until they are past the photo radar unit, then you can bet that they also speed where our children cross the streets.
Covert enforcement acts as a general deterrence because drivers believe that they can receive speeding tickets anywhere at any time.
In 2014, Dr. Karim El Basyouny and his team from the University of Alberta conducted a study of the impact that automated mobile speed enforcement on the frequency and severity of different types of motor vehicle collisions on Edmonton roadways. The study showed that there were significant reductions in all collision severities and types as described below:
Severe collisions (fatal and injury): reduction of 32.1%
Property Damage Only collisions: reduction of 28.7%
Total collisions: reduction of 27.7%
Speed related property damage only collisions: reduction of 27.3%
To date, photo radar has been challenged on technical and constitutional arguments, even up to the Court of Appeal in the provinces of Alberta and British Columbia. However, the issue of photo radar has withstood all appeals and petitions.
Violators are photographed as they pass by photo-enforcement locations thus enabling police to produce valid evidence in court.
Although speed doesn’t always cause crashes, it always determines the severity of a crash. Our bodies are fragile and even a small difference in speed can mean the difference between life and death. This is especially true for pedestrians, motorcyclists and cyclists. In 2016, more than 23,000 collisions occurred on Edmonton roadways. More than 3,300 people were injured and 22 were killed. Collisions result in higher insurance premiums, increased wait times for emergency services, higher taxes, legal costs, lost productivity and travel delays. If we consider the pain and suffering of victims, or lives cut short, the cost of collisions is immeasurable.