Shanghai police are cracking down on drivers who do not give way to pedestrians at crossroads.
From December 1 up until Monday, 381 drivers have been caught on camera committing the offense at the crossroads of Gonghexin Road and Yongxing Road near Shanghai Railway Station, and more cameras are being installed elsewhere in the city to catch offenders, police said.
The camera, placed in the middle of a road parallel to Gonghexin Road with a high-resolution view of the zebra crossings, automatically takes pictures of cars turning right from Yongxing Road that do not slow down or stop when a pedestrian crossing the street at a green light is within 1 meter. "Backstage, we use three pictures which clearly show the entire process of the offense as evidence in punishing the drivers," said Zhang Yingxuan, an official of Shanghai traffic police.
The offense costs drivers a 100 yuan (US) fine and three demerits on their driving license.
He explained that drivers passing pedestrians who stand on the ends of the crossings waiting for a green light won't be punished because the camera works only when the green light is on.
Pedestrians have 25 seconds to cross Yongxing Road, while drivers on that street have 50 seconds to take the right turn, but a traffic assistant said pedestrians were used to giving way to drivers.
While cameras will be primarily installed at the city's crossroads, many residents complain that drivers won't slow down at crossings in the middle of the streets.
Last year in suburban Songjiang District, police installed a camera at a crossroads in Songjiang University Town that takes pictures of every car so police can spot drivers who do not give way to pedestrians.
Police said that since then the number of offenses at the crossroads had dropped.