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Drivers Freezing At Red-Light Camera Intersection

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A red-light camera in Melrose Park (CBS)

A red-light camera in Melrose Park (CBS)

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MELROSE PARK, Ill. (CBS) — You know the feeling. You’re driving through an intersection when suddenly, you see the red-light camera flash.

The fear of that flash has drivers in one suburb stuck in traffic -– by choice. They’re sitting at red lights, sometimes tying up traffic because they’re so afraid of getting a $100 ticket, CBS 2’s Pamela Jones reports.

Some say it’s a flashing frenzy at North and First avenues in Melrose Park — red-light cameras sometimes going off several times a minute.

But it turns out not everyone getting snapped is breaking the law. And that has drivers scared to move.

“I did that once at this very same traffic light. I stopped. I waited, and yet I was still ticketed,” one motorist said.

CBS 2 observed drivers sitting at the corner, refusing to turn right on red, even though posted signs say that is permitted as long as you make a complete stop.

CBS 2 tested the system, stopping at the corner for more than five second. The camera went off.

Drivers say they’re tired of that sinking feeling when they think they’re obeying the rules of the road, but then look up in their rear-view mirror and see the flashing lights, anyway.

Melrose Park police say drivers who stop completely before turning won’t get tickets. A police officer reviews all the images from the cameras and decides who should get ticketed.

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