Ocoee could change enforcement of right-on-red-light camera tickets



OCOEE, Fla. - Ocoee commissioners are considering a change in how police enforce red-light camera violations.
Signs warn drivers that camera enforcement includes right turns, but some feel the cameras are catching people on a technicality that isn't a big safety issue.
When the light turns red, drivers are supposed to stop.
"You pull up, it says stop, you stop. Then you go,” said Gary Quidort. “It doesn't take that long."
But drivers often slow down and roll through a red light when making a right-hand turn.
In the city of Ocoee, red light cameras have caught many of them.
Of the roughly 17,000 red light camera tickets issued this year, more than half are on right hand turns.
"I got a $200 ticket running the red light making a right, trying to get to work," said driver Ayanna Placide.
Placide admits she doesn't always make a complete stop before rolling through on a right turn.
She's happy to city commissioners will soon be discussing not enforcing that type of red-light violation.
But Mayor Scott Vandergrift doesn't like the idea. Although he’s received two red-light tickets, he still believes a violation is a violation — and a safety issue.
"There’s nine different directions people can come at you making a right-hand turn," Vandergrift said.
Vandergrift said others feel the violations are just too easy to give out while drivers like Placide don't believe it's all that dangerous.
"As long as you're a safe driver and can see no car is coming, it should be fine," Placide said.
Vandergrift said his stance on the issue had nothing to do with money. The meeting to discuss the issue is set for the middle of next month.
Drivers will have a couple more weeks before new red light cameras go up in Osceola County.
The county's nine other locations won't be installed until next month because officials are still waiting on state approval.
Once the cameras go up, drivers will get a 30-day warning period before tickets go out.
Right now, the only active camera owned by Osceola County is at Poinciana Boulevard and Pleasant Hill Road.