Red-Light Safety Program

Final locations selected for the Red-Light Safety Camera Pilot

Summary

Red-light running is a significant cause of crashes, deaths, and injuries at signalized intersections. Statewide, between 2015 and 2020 there have been 1,879 crashes as a result of red-light and other traffic signal violations.

Hawaii is one of 26 states that does not use automated traffic enforcement on their public roads. Federal data suggests that automated traffic enforcement can reduce costs of enforcement, lessen the danger of enforcement for officers, and increase the perception of drivers that there are consequences to violating traffic laws.

Current Status

PhaseIntersectionStatusNumber of Citations/Warnings through 1/17/2023
1Vineyard Boulevard and Palama StreetLive for citations 11/20/2022202 citations
1Vineyard Boulevard and Liliha StreetLive for citations 12/12/202261 citations (north-west approach)
139 citations (south-east approach)
2Vineyard Boulevard and Nuuanu AvenueLive for citations 1/6/202314 citations
2Pali Highway and Vineyard BoulevardLive for warning 12/26/202227 warnings (north-west approach)
49 warnings (south-east approach)
2Pali Highway and School StreetLive for warning 12/28/202268 warnings
3Likelike Highway and School Street 
3King Street and Ward Avenue 
3Kapiolani Boulevard and Kamakee Street 
3Beretania Street and Piikoi Street 
3McCully Street and Algaroba Street 

History

  • 2019 – Act 131 was introduced as Senate Bill 663 in the 2019 Legislature. Act 131 (19) established a red-light running committee made up of representatives from the courts, public defender’s office, state highway safety council, county police departments, prosecutors offices, state and county transportation agencies, and community traffic safety advocates. The resulting report from that committee can be found here.
  • 2020 – Based on the committee recommendations, Act 30 (20) authorized a two-year pilot to determine if automated enforcement of red-light running could reduce crashes and injuries.
  • February 2022 – HDOT and the City and County of Honolulu Department of Transportation Services selected potential intersections for the pilot based on crash and traffic data. Engineering studies to determine the final locations for installation have begun.
  • September 2022 – The Vineyard Boulevard and Palama Street intersection and the Vineyard Boulevard and Liliha Street intersection have been selected. More information here.
  • November 2022 – Vineyard and Palama site is live for citations; Vineyard and Liliha site is live for warnings. Announcement here.
  • December 2022 – Phase 2 and 3 site selection is announced here.

Sample Incident Process

  1. Incident occurs. Images are captured by the system, recorded, and encrypted. Each file includes multiple still images, video, and data relating to the potential red-light violation.
  2. Data transfers to the vendor processing center for preliminary screening (for example, does the captured data show a violation, matching DMV license plate data). Only potential violations are sent forward for additional screening.
  3. Honolulu Police Department (HPD) reviews and makes the final decision whether to approve or reject the violation.
  4. Approved violations are queued for printing and mailed within 10-days after the incident.
  5. Violator can review the data on the online portal (after receiving the citation in the mail). Data available for review includes the images and video captured by the system. Payments, questions, evidence explaining or denying the violation, and court hearing requests may be submitted via the portal.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Will the citation amount for the photo citations be the same as those issued manually by a police officer?
    Yes, the fine for a first-time red-light running violation is up to $200. See https://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/hrscurrent/Vol05_Ch0261-0319/HRS0291C/HRS_0291C-0161.htm for penalties for subsequent violations.
  2. Will the Honolulu Police Department review the photos prior to a citation being issued?
    Yes, see sample incident process.
  3. Can the system take a photo of the driver and cite the driver instead?
    No, due to privacy concerns Hawaii Revised Statute Chapter 291J-7 specifies the responsibility of the registered owner of the motor vehicle for red-light running violations.
  4. Where do the fines go? Does the vendor get a portion of the fine?
    All fines collected under HRS Chapter 291J shall be deposited into the photo red light imaging detector systems program special fund. The fund can only be used for the establishment, implementation, operation, oversight, repair, and maintenance of the red-light safety camera system. The vendor is not paid based on the number of citations given by the system (see HRS 291J-4).

Resources and Documents