Computer error leads to false collections notifications
Jan 26, 2012 Karen Umpierre
American Traffic Solutions (ATS), a photo enforcement vendor used by the city of Arnold, Missouri, mistakenly sent out letters to 1,200 drivers asking them to pay unwarranted fines, TheNewspaper.com reports. ATS sent out 8,000 collections letters, finding debtors who owed money for running red lights. But an alleged computer glitch led to around 15 percent of residents being asked to pay fines they didn't owe. "Recently, a letter was sent from ATS, on behalf of the city of Arnold, in an effort to collect on tickets that were issued from 2005 to present and that remained unpaid," a city press release noted, as quoted by the news source. "Unfortunately, a computer error caused a small percentage of those letters to be sent to persons who had already satisfied their cases." City attorney Bob Sweeney explained to the St. Louis Dispatch that the error occurred because of a communication mix-up between ATS and Missouri's municipal court system - collection agencies were never notified. Ironically, it was Arnold that installed the country's first red-light camera system in 2005.