Quebec's minister of transport, Robert Poëti, said photo radars and red-light cameras have been effective at reducing road infractions, and their point is not to fatten the government purse.
"Since 2009, photo radars have been statistically proven," Poëti said in a radio interview on Radio-Canada Tuesday. "They have reduced speeding on average by 17 per cent, and we've seen a 80 per cent reduction in drivers running red lights."
Poëti's comments came one day after announcing that four new red-light cameras and one new photo-radar camera would be installed in Laval. That prompted media speculation that this was a government cash grab.
"The goal is not to make money," Poëti said, "and any money that's made is used only for road safety. We're not using it to pay the debt."
New radars are being installed mostly in suburbs because they're the ones that asked for them, Poëti said.
"We work with cities that asked us to help them reduce speeding," he said.
The province recently invested in 37 radars and cameras, 18 of them mobile.
Poëti said that a large portion of speeding infractions — one-third of them in 2014 — happen at construction sites. Photo radar will also be used in these locations as education tools, he said.
"We have to remind people where there is greater risk of accidents, at construction sites."