Oregon man fined $500 for challenging timing on red-light cameras

Mats Jarlstrom, a Swedish-born electronics engineer, filed a lawsuit against the Oregon State Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying over its engineering laws. Jarlstrom and the Institute for Justice argue the laws violate the First Amendment. (Photo: Institute for Justice)

Mats Jarlstrom’s trouble all began with a red-light camera.

In April 2013, Jarlstrom’s wife, Laurie, received a ticket after driving her Volkswagen through an intersection in Beaverton, Oregon, that was equipped with a traffic camera.

His wife paid the fine, but the timing of the traffic lights at the intersection piqued Jarlstrom’s interest, so he decided to look into a formula created in 1959 to calculate the length of yellow lights.

Jarlstrom says he realized the original formula failed to take into account the extra time it takes for a car to slow before making a right-hand turn safely.

“Currently, people are getting tickets for running red lights because they’re slowing down when they’re making turns,” he tells The Daily Signal. “It’s a safety issue because any time we run a red light, we’re in the intersection for the wrong reason, and there is cross traffic, and especially pedestrians are in danger.”

Jarlstrom, an electronics engineer from Sweden, revised the formula to take the deceleration into account, and decided to take his findings public.

But doing so, he quickly learned, came with a risk, and a costly one at that.

Read more here.

 

— From The Daily Signal

 

 

 

Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2017 Southern Arizona News-Examiner