A Fredericton city councillor wants to see cameras installed at major intersections in an attempt to reduce the number of New Brunswick motorists who run red lights.

The cameras automatically photograph the rear licence plate of any car that runs a red light. The car's owner is then sent a ticket.

"All we're seeking to do in New Brunswick is to mimic the legislation that virtually every other province west of New Brunswick has in place," said Coun. Stephen Chase.

Changes would be needed to New Brunswick's Motor Vehicle Act for the plan to take effect.

Advocacy groups say the cameras are a good idea if they are used correctly.

"The [Canadian Automobile Association] in Atlantic Canada supports the use of this technology as long as there is adequate and visible signage indicating that the technology is being used," said Gary Howard of the CAA Atlantic office.

But studies have suggested the cameras provide only limited improvements in safety. Researchers say most tickets based on the cameras are issued for smaller infractions, such as turning right without stopping.

"Once you take away those people that are the right turns, the revenue for the cameras drops significantly and the justification for the expense of the cameras becomes much harder," said Rajiv Shah, a University of Illinois researcher who analyzed the widespread use of the cameras in Chicago.

The cameras are in use in five Canadian provinces and across the United States.