Monday, October 5, 2015
Speed Cameras Gaining Popularity
Instead of slamming on your breaks to avoid getting pulled over by the hidden cop on your way to work, there may be a new way for the city to make money off of your violation. Automated speed enforcement is steadily becoming more widespread around the country but remains relatively atypical with only 138 jurisdictions operating such systems as of last month. Just like red light cameras, the speed cameras will take photos of any violators who break the law. And just like red light cameras, many of these communities who piloted the program are fighting back because the offenses are harmless and can become overzealous. Penalties associated with speeding leads to fines, points on the license or a citation that may go on the driver’s record. The traditional method lets the officer depend the course of action based on wait he or she felt was the best course of action. Now the cameras will decide for them.
Montgomery County, Maryland
The statistics do support positive changes speeding cameras have on the community because of how black and white the violation is. These cameras can effectively deter accidents in school zones and residential communities. One of the communities that have tested the program had some impressive numbers. If all U.S. communities had speed camera programs such as the community the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety studied in Maryland’s Montgomery County, more than 21,000 fatal or debilitating injuries would have been prevented in 2013. Speed cameras were implemented in Montgomery County in 2007. In 2014, the county had 56 fixed cameras, 30 portable cameras and 6 mobile speed vans. In the same year, the authorities looked over the numbers and discovered that the cameras reduced the likelihood of a driver exceeding the speed limit by more than 10 mph by about 59% when compared to similar roads in nearby counties. They also found that the camera program resulted in a 19% decline in which the likelihood of a crash would involve a fatality or a debilitating injury. The after effect of slower speeds will in theory create safer roads as crashes are less likely to happen.
They’ve also introduced speed-camera corridors to make a bigger impact than just the cameras alone. With corridors, speed enforcement is focused on long segments of roads instead of specific locations. This is so that drivers do not become familiar with their exact locations. The cameras are regularly moved to different locations on those roads. Speed camera corridors force drivers to watch their speed for the entire length of a road instead of breaking right when they spot a camera. Researchers found that the corridor approach led to even further safety gains by reducing the likelihood of a crash involving fatal or debilitating injury an additional 30%.
While these numbers provide reasons for the cameras to stay intact and protect lives, there’s been speculation that the program could conversely do just as much damage at the red light cameras. For instance, in Nassau County on Long Island, where speed cameras were installed in just about two dozen school locations, the cameras were torn down due to equipment problems. Nassau County had to compensate more than $2 million in fines and the local legislature decided to abandon the program .
Clearwater hasn’t opened its doors to speeding cameras just yet, but they may be approaching. And while red light cameras are still in effect in many locations, the chances of them being installed are very likely. In any case, there continues to be claims of accidents because of these red light cameras. If you have one, you may be entitled to compensation.
Dolman Law Group
The lawyers at Dolman Law Group like to stay ahead of the game with new technology that can affect the way you drive. Although the reasoning behind both the red light and speed cameras is to protect the citizens, technology always seems to have a repercussion that simultaneously harms the same citizens it’s trying to protect. If you are one of these harmed citizens and have been injured because of a car accident, call the experienced attorneys at Dolman Law Group for a free consultation. Dial (727) 451-6900 today.
Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, Florida 33765