NYC adding to speed cameras near schools

September 11, 2014

As New York Transportation Department sets out to exercise more control on traffic, drivers speeding near NYC schools will find it difficult to escape tickets.

In a recent announcement, Mayor Bill De Blasio revealed that the city has started installing speed cameras near schools to protect kids against accidents. The move is a part of a larger program, Vision Zero, aimed at reducing the number of pedestrian deaths in the city. The program aims to address traffic fatalities in which approximately 4,000 New Yorkers are seriously injured and more than 250 are killed every year.

According to NYPD’s Motor Vehicle Collision report, a total of 941 pedestrians were injured and 7 were killed in the month of June alone. The report also cites unsafe speed as a factor in 277 vehicle collisions.

The new law passed in Albany is an extension of a bill passed last year, which allowed the city to install 20 speed enforcement cameras in school zones. City officials now have the state’s blessing to add 120 cameras in addition to the existing ones.

Speed cameras will help to nab those over-speeding in the school zone.

City Officials plan to install 140 cameras near schools in NYC to curb traffic fatalities. Image by wwworks.

Cameras costing $90,000 to $115,000 are mounted on cars of Transportation Department and record the image of the licence plates of vehicles violating the speed limit. The registered owner of each offending vehicle then receives a violation notice. The city charges a $50 fine along with the administrative costs from the vehicles that exceed speed limit by more than 10 miles an hour.

In the words of Senator Jeffrey D. Klein, “When people get a ticket, they stop speeding. It has a tremendous chilling effect.”

Although Mayor De Blasio has played a proactive role in implementing the program, the city’s Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association (PBA) is not convinced of the approach. The organization argues that speed cameras will only work towards raising the revenue and are incapable of delivering the duties of a professionally trained police officer.

Terming the cameras flawed tools that cannot be relied upon, the PBA asserts that people driving without license or insurance, and those carrying illegal weapons, will slip by in the absence of a police officer.

In a statement issued in 2013, PBA president Patrick J. Lynch has already expressed the organization’s views against the city’s move to be speed camera-equipped.

Michael Reilly, President of Community Education Council 31, opines that cameras alone aren’t capable of curbing traffic related accidents, and that signs with speed limits stating “Speed Camera Enforced” should be posted in all school zones.

In a bid to ensure that the New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) complies with the law while implementing the program, and to prevent it from becoming a revenue generation tool, Reilly also posted a detailed outline of all the specifications that motorists need to be aware of.

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Category: News, Parking Tech, Regulations

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