Smile: You're on red-light camera
By Ben Aguirre Jr., STAFF WRITER
Article Last Updated: 02/11/2007 02:41:20 AM PST

NEWARK If you drive through a red light at the intersection of Newark Boulevard and Jarvis Avenue in the near future, don't be surprised to see the flash of a light bulb followed by a $361 citation mailed to your home.

The city has installed a new red-light camera at the intersection after engineers tabbed it as one of the area's most traveled and potentially dangerous, police traffic Sgt. Fred Zachau said.

"It's a high-volume, high-pedestrian-traffic intersection," Zachau said. "It's the top intersection for vehicular traffic."

The camera begins operating first thing Thursday, and will activate when a vehicle enters the intersection after a light has turned red. It will take four photographs and a 12-second video of vehicles illegally making left and right turns or passing through the intersection, the sergeant said.

Violators will be given a 30-day grace period, but any violation thereafter is subject to a hefty citation, Zachau said.

The camera is the third one the city has installed since it implemented the program.

adopted a resolution last March to implement the automated red light enforcement program. The other intersections equipped with cameras are Cherry and Mowry avenues, and Cedar Boulevard and Mowry Avenue.

City engineers and police are studying a fourth intersection, Mowry Avenue and Alpinerose Court, near NewPark Mall, where another camera could be installed in the future.

The program was implemented in part
to reduce the number of instances of pedestrians being hit by vehicles, as well as to reduce injury crashes caused by red-light violators, Zachau said.

Staff writer Ben Aguirre Jr. covers police and the courts for The Argus. He can be reached at (510) 353-7011 or