Red Light Camera Program
Napa Strengthens Commitment to Traffic Safety with Automated Red Light Enforcement System
With intersection-related traffic accidents creating safety risks for city residents, businesses and visitors, the Napa Police Department is launching an Automated Red Light Enforcement System at four high-injury intersections that were identified as part of Napa’s Local Roadway Safety Plan. The program is expected to begin in early 2024.
Between 2016 and 2020 in the City of Napa, 90% (1,082 collisions) of 1,207 total collisions occurred at intersections, compared to 10% (125 collisions) that occurred on roadway segments, according to the city’s Local Roadway Safety Plan. Compared to other state communities, according to California Office of Traffic Safety data for 2020, Napa ranked 9th highest out of 105 comparable jurisdictions in total fatal and injury crashes, and 5th highest for composite crashes (consisting of all types).
Napa City Council approved the new red-light enforcement program in August 2023. Similar programs in cities across the country have proven successful in reducing intersection-related accidents. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), after introducing red-light cameras in Oxnard, Calif., for example, the city saw a 29% reduction in injury crashes at intersections with traffic signals. Historically in large cities with red light enforcement programs, fatal red light running crash rates have been reduced by 21%, IIHS reported. Conversely, studies have shown that fatal red light running crash rates in U.S. cities increase by as much as 30% after red-light safety programs are discontinued.
Following the introduction of the initial camera system at the intersection of Soscol and Lincoln Avenues on Dec. 29, cameras will be installed at three additional intersections, totaling 16 approaches. Warnings will be issued for the first 30 days following each installation, with citations beginning in month two after each installation.
Vehicles that are recorded proceeding through a red light, turning right on a red arrow, or turning right without stopping will be eligible for citations. All infractions will be independently verified by the police department before citations are issued.
Similar to automated red light enforcement programs in other California and U.S. cities, stationary mounted cameras that monitor all four approaches to an intersection will record vehicles with both video footage and still photos. The cameras will be synchronized to operate with traffic light timing and vehicle approaches.
The four intersections are: Soscol and Imola avenues; Redwood Road and Solano Avenue; Soscol and Lincoln avenues; and State Route 29 and Trower Avenue.
Fines are $445 for going through a red light or turning right on a red arrow and $217 for failing to stop on the right turn.
Location of Cameras
- Lincoln Avenue and Soscol Avenue
- Redwood Road and Solano Avenue
- Highway 29 and Trower Avenue
- Soscol Avenue (Highway 221) and Imola Avenue (Highway 121) @(Model.BulletStyle == CivicPlus.Entities.Modules.Layout.Enums.BulletStyle.Decimal ? "ol" : "ul")>
Once a violation is confirmed, a Notice of Traffic Violation is mailed to the red-light offender or the registered owner. The left-hand side includes the driver's and/or the registered owner's information, date to appear in court, and the court's contact information. The right-hand side has four photographs of the red-light incident:
- The first photograph or video shows the vehicle at or behind the limit line when the light is red.
- The second photograph or video shows the vehicle through the intersection while the light is red.
- The third photograph shows the driver of the vehicle.
- The fourth photograph shows a close up of the license plate.
View a sample of the citation. In addition to the four photographs, there is a 12-second video captured of the violation. If desired, the driver or the registered owner can view video footage from any computer. If you do not have a computer, you can make an appointment to view the video at the Police Department.
If you received a violation but are not the driver, you may identify the driver by completing and returning the Identify New Driver section on page four of the citation. Or you may complete the Identify New Driver Form here and drop it off at the Napa Police Department. The form must be submitted on or before the deadline noted on your citation.
The Napa Police Department manages and controls the Red-light Camera Program. A Napa Police Department designee reviews and approves each citation that is issued. All violators will receive a mandated fine of at least $490 set by the State Legislature with a copy of the four photographs. In addition to the State mandated fine, a convicted red-light violation will have the penalty of one point on your driving record. Our system currently captures straight-thru, left-turn, and right-turn red-light violations. If you have made a right-turn on a red-light and did not make a complete stop prior to the limit line, it is a red-light violation.
- What is “running a red light”?
- The citation or notice says that I ran a red light; but I know I stopped.
- In the pictures my brake lights are on, showing that I stopped. Why did I get this citation?
- How can I view the video?
- How can you take my picture without my permission?
- I was making a right turn and there was no sign saying that I could not do that.
- I slowed down and there were no cars coming. It was safe.
- The driver in the picture is not me or I sold the vehicle. What should I do?
- What happens if I ignore this citation?
- Who calibrates Napa’s traffic signals?
- How much is the fine?
- The fine is too expensive. What can I do?
- Can I go to traffic school to remove the point from my driving record?
- I still have more questions. Who can I call?
- How do red light enforcement systems work?
- When does the program begin?
- Why is this program being launched?
- How will this affect crash fatalities and road safety in Napa?
- How will violations be determined?
- Where will the photo speed vehicles be located?