Kingsport city leaders to vote on extending red light camera contract

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KINGSPORT, TN (WJHL)- It has been 10 years since Kingsport first installed red light cameras.

Tuesday night city leaders are expected to extend a contract to keep them around for at least another four years.

Kingsport Police Chief David Quillin said the idea of photo enforcement first surfaced after 2005 proved to be a deadly year on city roadways.

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“In 2005 I think it was we had 21 fatalities in the city,” Quillin said.

While everyone may not have been on board with the idea, just a few years after installing the red light cameras, Chief Quillin said they got results.

“There was a lot of discussion when we first implemented the program, both for the system, and some against, a lot against. We saw somewhere between a 40 and 50 percent reduction in t-bone type collisions,” Quillin said.

Even now Kingsport police department’s public information officer Tom Patton said it continues to work as a safety tool, monitoring places that can be difficult to patrol.

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“Stone drive at Eastman road, because of the way the roadway is laid out the narrowness of the shoulder and the close proximity of the businesses to that intersection, there is really no where for the officer to sit and monitor that intersection anyway, so this is one way we can use technology to our benefit,” Patton said.

If the board votes to extend the agreement with Redflex Traffic Systems, Inc. Redflex outlined in that agreement they would upgrade the cameras to HD by August 2017.

The Kingsport BMA will vote on the extension at their meeting Tuesday night.

Copyright 2016 WJHL. All Rights Reserved.

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