Governor Greg Abbott, who's running for re-election, recently proposed that the Texas legislature ban red light cameras.

For Abbott, in part, it's a safety issue saying they may lead to more accidents. Is that true? Here's what he told me during a recent interview with WFAA:

"According to studies that I've seen, these red-light cameras actually increase the number of tail end accidents that are happening. I think the better solution is just good old-fashioned law enforcement."

More rear-end accidents because of red light cameras, that's what he's saying. What studies is Abbott talking about? This document from his campaign links to a study by Case Western University in Ohio.

That study looked at 12 years of data, in Texas, and concludes: Red light cameras do lead to more fender-benders, like rear-end crashes, from drivers slamming on the breaks trying to avoid a ticket.

The study has not been reviewed by other researchers to validate the findings. But some other researchers, in this space, have reached similar conclusions about rear-end crashes.

So, red light cameras make us less safe? Case closed?

Not really.

Let's look at the bigger picture with three research papers.

So, back to Abbott's claim. Is it true that red light cameras may increase the risk of rear-end wrecks?


But, big picture, the evidence suggests red light cameras can provide an overall safety benefit.

Got something you want verified? Send me an email to