IDOT approves red light cameras for already safe intersections

Ten years ago Illinois legislators allowed Chicago-area suburbs to install red light cameras, but with some caveats: The state transportation department would need to approve them, and then only for the most dangerous intersections. But a Tribune analysis found that often didn’t happen. More often than not these cameras were placed at intersections that didn’t meet the state threshold to qualify for a camera.

For this story I created an interactive map (archive link) showing camera locations in the Chicago suburbs. These cameras were then coded by different metrics, selected by the reader.

Where crashes happen at red light cameras

 

A follow-up story (archive) explored how often suburbs agreed to issue tickets based on reports from the camera vendor. Some municipalities only agreed with the vendor 11 percent of the time that a violation was indeed a violation. Other municipalities issued 99.9 percent of all suggested tickets, rubber stamping the videos in seconds. For this piece I created another interactive map, this time with an accompanying interactive chart.