Most of us have crossed the speed limit threshold at some point in our lives. Whether you are running late to work or are racing home to let out the dog, chances are you have broken a speed limit law at some point.
Recently, PennDOT began to utilize speed cameras as enforcement tools to catch those who are not abiding by the posted speed limit. A rise in accidents and fatalities in construction zones is being used as a justification for rolling out this new technology allegedly to combat speeders. PennDOT claims that reductions in speed throughout construction zones on Pennsylvania highways will reduce the overall fatality rate of workers at these locations.
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Here are some of the details outlining the new speed camera initiatives being put into place throughout our area.
Speed Camera Initiative Began in March
Late last year, PennDOT announced that it would be using overhead radar and camera-based technology in order to issue tickets to drivers who speed in construction zones. Large overhead devices began popping up on major highways that were undergoing construction and road improvements. These cameras are designed to measure the speed of a car and take pictures of the license plate on the vehicle. However, the use of such license plate reading technologies poses potential privacy concerns to all drivers, given that this data can be used to track individuals’ movement without their consent.
As the year progressed, more and more of these units appeared on Pennsylvania highways and interchanges.
Infractions and Resulting Fines
When spokespersons for PennDOT announced the installation of overhead radar technologies, they also outlined the associated infractions and the resulting fines that would be incurred. For example, if a driver is traveling at 11 MPH over the posted speed limit, they would be issued a ticket, which would be mailed to their address. Since the process is completely automated, drivers have little recourse in challenging such fines.
PennDOT also described the fines that would be levied if one is recorded speeding in one of these zones. The first offense is a warning with no financial penalty. The second offense is a fine of $75.00. The third offense and subsequent penalties would be $150.00. Interestingly, drivers cannot be issued points on their licenses for these infractions because of existing traffic laws.
Existing Law Regarding Speed Enforcement Methods
Several years ago, when local law enforcement decided to implement speed cameras to cut at intersections for red light violations, the tickets issued from these cameras were ruled as non-moving violations as are parking tickets. That means that insurance rates or drivers’ licenses would not be impacted if ticketed in this manner. Nevertheless, the financial burden of excessive traffic fines continues to plague Pennsylvania citizens.
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