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Red light cameras coming to Arlington

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Drivers should think twice before running red lights in Arlington county. Police there have stepped up patrols at local intersections.

At the corner of Washington Boulevard and Glebe Road, an Arlington County police officer pulls over one driver after another for running red lights.

Police say it’s one of Arlington's most dangerous intersections - and if county officials approve, it could get red light cameras this summer along with five other intersections.

“The cars don't give respect to the people, you know?” says Falls Church resident Jorge Contreas.

Violators pay a $50 fine, and in the first year, the program is expected to generate about $550,000 in revenue with most going to a contractor who installs the cameras.

Four Arlington intersections already have these cameras. with more possibly on the way, some critics worry about the "big brother" factor.

Others worry about local governments being motivated by money.

“What we have to worry about is the camel's nose under the tent and the slippery slope,” says John Townsend of AAA Mid-Atlantic. “Are you doing this to generate revenue or are you doing this to save lives?”

Arlington County police say this is not about revenue but about safety. The county compiled a list of the 20 most dangerous intersections in the area using criteria like the number of accidents and the number of tickets issued and decided the six chosen intersections could benefit most from red light cameras.

With the weather warming up and gas prices rising, police also predict more locals will commute to work on foot or on bike and they believe these cameras could prevent crosswalk collisions.

Here is a list of where the speed cameras will be placed.

•Jefferson Davis Highway and 23rd Street S.
•Columbia Pike and S. Glebe Road
•N. Glebe Road and Washington Boulevard
•Columbia Pike and George Mason Drive
•Four Mile Run Drive and George Mason Drive
•Lee Highway and George Mason Drive

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