Traffic safety program in full swing


The city of Tallahassee has launched an aggressive attack on speeding by installing more traffic light cameras.

 The city of Tallahassee began its Red Light Safety Program in the summer of 2010 and the first camera was activated at the intersection of Tennessee and North Monroe Streets on July 1, 2010.

 As of Jan. 3, additional safety cameras have been monitoring the eastbound, northbound and westbound approaches of Tennessee and Monroe Streets, West Tennessee Street and Ocala Road, and the intersection of Capital Circle NW and West Tennessee Street.  

 There are also cameras posted on the northbound and westbound approaches of Killearn Center Boulevard and Capital Circle NE, and the westbound and southbound approaches of Apalachee Parkway and Magnolia Drive.

 “The safety cameras are a great addition to the city. Tallahassee is a college town and it’s very easy for students to speed,” said Jasmine Harris, 21, a third-year physical therapy student from Tampa.

 “I speed without even thinking about it sometimes. Maybe now everyone will be more cautious and aware of the way they drive.”

 Cameras at traffic lights ensure safer roads for drivers and pedestrians.  That is the purpose of the Red Light Camera Safety Program, however some students believe it’s a way for police officers to meet their quota.

  Although the cameras maybe viewed as an attempt to increase revenue it is still teaching drivers a valuable lesson about traffic rules.

 “The goal of the program is to reduce red light violations and the number of serious intersection crashes. An average of 28 notices of violations per day have been mailed. Over time, we hope to see this number decrease as drivers become more conscious of their actions and obey traffic signals,” said Allison Faris of the City Tallahassee’s Department of Communication.

 When photographs are taken at busy intersections they are uploaded online for drivers to view.

 Video of the violation is provided along with two enlarged pictures. Due to the advances in multimedia it allows the courtroom process to be excluded because the ticket cannot be disputed.

 Violators are mailed a $158 fine. This fine can continue to increase if payment if not received.

 Although they are fined, drivers will not have any points assessed to their license.

 Law enforcement is now using multimedia to assist in catching traffic offenders. The Red Light Camera Safety Program is an initiative of the city of Tallahassee to prevent serious intersection crashes.

 The idea to install traffic light cameras arose in 2009.

 Designated by the state legislature, the Red Light Safety Program was designed to reestablish respect for traffic signals.

 Similar programs have been implemented in locales across the country.

 City officials hope the program will increase traffic safety and reduce roadway fatalities.