March 25, 2010
United States Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals Affirms Dismissal of Case Challenging American Traffic Solutions Right to Operate Intersection Safety Cameras in Texas
Scottsdale, AZ (Business Wire) - The U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals today affirmed a U.S. district court’s dismissal of a lawsuit claiming that American Traffic Solutions, Inc. (ATS) was required to have a private investigators license in order to operate intersection safety cameras in the State of Texas. Bell v. American Traffic Solutions, Inc., No. 09-10722 (5th Cir. March 23, 2010).
In 2008, each appellant in the case ran a red traffic light in either the city of Arlington or the city of Irving and received a notice of violation. In both cases, the appellants did not contest the notices and each paid fines of $75. Shortly thereafter, they filed this lawsuit.
In dismissing the case, Circuit Judges Fortunato Benavides, Edward Prado and Leslie Southwick concluded that “interest in evading the law cannot create standing – a plaintiff’s complaint that the defendant’s actions will make his criminal activity more difficult lacks standing because his interest is not legally protected.” Consequently, the court found that “ATS’ photographs of Appellants’ vehicles were properly admitted to prove Appellants’ traffic violations.”
“Today’s ruling confirms that the claims were without merit and reaffirms that the best way to avoid a red-light violation citation is to stop on red,” said George Hittner, vice president and general counsel of ATS. “From coast to coast, courts continue to uphold the legality and constitutionality of red-light camera safety programs, negating the habitual and tired claims by opponents.”
“The plaintiffs’ lawsuit was an ill-conceived attempt to prevent municipalities from enforcing traffic laws that protect innocent lives. ATS will continue to work closely with our partner cities to ensure road safety programs remain an effective public safety tool. Intersection safety cameras successfully modify driver behavior by increasing compliance with traffic laws, reducing red-light running which causes unnecessary crashes, injuries and deaths,” Hittner concluded.
ATS’ road safety solutions are specially designed to assist communities in their endeavor to advance road safety in school zones, on residential, town and urban roads, as well as on highways. Many national and federal safety organizations, as well as the communities across North America using traffic safety systems, have independently proven and endorsed road safety programs for their ability to reduce crashes, fatalities and injuries while increasing safety in their communities. More than 500 communities in the United States are now using cameras to deter red-light running and the fatalities, injuries and property damage that result from red-light runners. ATS worked with outside counsel Haynes and Boone, L.L.P., a Texas-based national law firm, to secure this decision.
A similar lawsuit against an Australian-based automated road safety program provider was also dismissed today by the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. Bell v. Redflex Traffic Systems, Inc., No. 09-40462 (5th Cir. March 23, 2010). 3
About American Traffic Solutions:
As the company whose principals were the architects of the first road safety cameras in the United States in 1987, ATS is also the fastest growing provider in North America, serving more than 26 million people in more than 200 communities including: New York City, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., St. Louis, Houston, Seattle and San Diego. ATS also offers PlatePass®, an automated electronic toll payment service that enables rental vehicle customers to use high-speed, cashless electronic toll lanes. ATS is a privately owned, U.S. corporation headquartered in Scottsdale, Ariz. For more information, please visit: www.RedLightCamera.com, www.PlatePass.com or www.atsol.com.