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ATS’ Newsletter, Vol. 6, Issue 52, Dec. 29, 2016

December 29th, 2016 Comments off

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Travel Safely and Enjoy the New Year, from ATS
American Traffic Solutions (ATS) asks motorists to be particularly careful while driving on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. This is a dangerous weekend to be traveling on the road. ATS urges travelers to be safe and courteous to one another so that everyone may enjoy the holiday with their friends and family. Start 2017 with a renewed commitment to drive safely and to stop on red. Happy New Year everyone! (All-Free-download.com/Freevectors image)

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Here Are the Worst Red-Light-Running Crashes in Florida and U.S.
Miami Herald (Florida), Dec. 28, 2016

Red means stop. At least, that’s what children and driver’s ed students are taught. But some drivers see red as an invitation to hit the gas. The result can be — unsurprisingly — disastrous as this video from American Traffic Solutions shows us. See related national coverage at Time Warner Cable News  and WTSP-TV CBS 10(Miami Herald/ATS image)

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Survey Finds Support for Red-Light Cameras in Charlotte
WSOC-TV Channel 9 (North Carolina), Dec. 26, 2016

A recent survey by the Charlotte Department of Transportation shows that hundreds of locals support red-light cameras on area roads to catch dangerous driving. … The survey gathered opinions from more than 400 people; support for red-light cameras peaked at 66 percent. (WSOC-TV Channel 9 image)

Red-Light Runners Make Driver Crazy in Tucson
KVOA-TV NBC 4 (Arizona), Dec. 23, 2016

Red-light runners are driving Christopher crazy. He told us, “I find myself having to look for red light runners before proceeding on a green light. I wish the city had the funding to place a motorcycle cop at random major intersections.” (KVOA-TV NBC 4 image)

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Survey: Thousands Illegally Pass School Buses Each Day in N.Y.
Time Warner Cable News/Spectrum News, Dec. 22, 2016

A new report from the New York State Association of Pupil Transportation reveals stopped school buses were passed illegally, statewide, an estimated 44,000 times on one day alone. Peter Mannella, director of the New York Association for Pupil Transportation calls the data disturbing. (Time Warner Cable News/Spectrum News image)

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ATS Technology Gets Noticed in Lafayette
KATC-TV ABC 3 (Louisiana), Dec. 20, 2016

Changes could be coming to red light and speed cameras in Lafayette. The Lafayette Consolidated Government is considering American Traffic Solutions to administer the program. Councilman Bruce Conque said “The hardware that we’ve seen from ATS is totally different technology. It’s the same approach, but the hardware is different.” (KATC-TV ABC 3 image)

 

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Florida Warns Drivers about Fraudulent Red-Light Ticket Scheme
Sun Sentinel, Dec. 28, 2016

If you are notified via e-mail that you were caught on camera running a red light and that you must pay the fine online, state officials warn you not to do it. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles says it’s a scam that’s been making the rounds for a few weeks. Spokeswoman Beth Frady said the highway safety department does not send e-mail citations and the agency does not require online payments.

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Red-Light Running Fines Help Elgin Install Speed Bumps
Elgin Courier (Texas), Dec. 27, 2016

Speeding in Elgin was made more difficult with the recent installation of speed calming devices. A total of 10 speed calming devices were installed last month at six locations in Elgin. … Funds for the project came from the city’s red-light camera fund.

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Drivers Reminded of Red-Light Rules, Camera Program
Fayetteville Observer (North Carolina), Dec. 26, 2016

Fayetteville is expected to soon have a total of 15 cameras at 13 intersections. The newest five have been planned for installation by the end of this year or early 2017. As for turning right on red, be sure to stop first. (WNCN-TV NBC 17/ATS image)

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Boynton Wins Red-Light Camera Ruling, as Program Nears Close
Palm Beach Post (Florida), Dec. 21, 2016

It’s another win for Boynton Beach in the world of red-light cameras — but a loss for those who thought they weren’t going to have to pay their tickets. On Dec. 20, the city’s assistant attorney announced an appellate panel of Palm Beach County’s circuit judges overturned an April 2015 ruling that tossed more than 100 red-light tickets. … “For me personally, it just validates my position that this is not only an issue that promotes public safety, and it’s been proven time and time again to be constitutional,” Commissioner Justin Katz said. (PalmBeachPost.com/Boynton Beach Police image)

 

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City Plan Commits to Zero Traffic Deaths, Injuries by 2030
Columbia Daily Tribune (Missouri), Dec. 20, 2016

After nearly an hour of public comment and talk among members, the Columbia City Council voted to adopt a Vision Zero policy that commits to reducing the number of traffic deaths and serious injuries to zero by 2030. … The policy requires City Manager Mike Matthes to come back to the council with a Vision Zero implementation plan by April 30. Suggestions presented to the council included hiring a Vision Zero program manager, re-instating the Columbia Police Department traffic unit and using red-light or speed cameras.  (Columbia Daily Tribune image)

 

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Issaquah Directs Speed Camera Funds to Traffic Safety, Education
Issaquah Reporter (Washington), Dec. 21, 2016

The Issaquah City Council unanimously voted to adopts its 2017 budget at the Dec. 19 regular meeting, as well as to create a School Zone Safety Revenue Fund. The special fund will ensure that revenues from speeding violations caught on camera will be dedicated toward education and safety related to traffic and mobility within the city.

 

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Driver Nearly Hits Student Getting Off School Bus
KCRG-TV ABC 9 (Iowa), Dec. 21, 2016

A car was just inches away from hitting an Urbandale middle school student as she got off her bus and began to cross the street. District officials say the driver of the car either ignored or didn’t see the extended stop arm and flashing lights. They say this happens far too often.

 

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ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety Safety is the responsibility of every driver, every day & every time someone gets behind the wheel of a vehicle. #StopArmSafety #ChatATS.

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Retweet by ATS_RoadSafety Miami Herald @MiamiHerald Teen fleeing police in stolen car runs red light, kills a mom in crash, cops say, http://hrld.us/2iDo89

 

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Automatic Tolling to Begin in Louisville, Southern Indiana
BereaOnline.com (Kentucky), Dec. 28, 2016

Drivers traveling in Louisville and Southern Indiana need to prepare for the start of tolling on three Ohio River bridges. Tolling on the Louisville – Southern Indian Ohio River Bridges Project is scheduled to begin Friday, Dec. 30.

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Verrazano Carpool Discount Will Continue Electronically
Staten Island Live (New York), Dec. 27, 2016

When the MTA switches to a cashless toll system next year, drivers taking advantage of the carpool plan for the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge will use their E-ZPass tags in order to continue getting the discount. Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s initiative, called open road tolling, will eliminate toll booth agents and will include sensors and cameras placed over the highway to read E-ZPass tags and take photos of license plates without requiring vehicles to stop and pay the toll. (Staten Island Advance image by Hilton Flores)

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Traffic Increases on MoPac Express Toll Lanes
Community Impact Newspaper (Texas), Dec. 22, 2016 

Usage of the northbound MoPac express lane has steadily increased since it opened in October, according to data released by the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority. The Northwest Austin toll lane now sees between 18,000 and 19,000 transactions on a weekly basis. During its initial weeks of use, the lane had between 15,000 and 16,000 transactions. (Community Impact Newspaper image)

 

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Letter to the Editor: Red-Light Cameras Are Helpful
The Tennessean, Dec. 29, 2016

I have a suggestion for solving the problem Beverly Bowman describes in her Dec. 22 letter (“Don’t run red lights”). Red-light cameras. These cameras have been effective in Kingsport. I, too, am appalled at the disregard of red lights in the Nashville area. We have learned better here in Kingsport.

ATS’ Newsletter Vol. 6, Issue 51

December 15th, 2016 Comments off

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ATS Wishes Families Everywhere a Safe Holiday Season

May the road home be well lit and safely traveled this holiday season for the sake of all motorists and those who are awaiting their arrival. All of us at American Traffic Solutions extend our warmest wishes to all for a healthy and happy holiday season.

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Spokane School Zone Tickets Fund Crime Prevention
KREM-TV CBS 2 (Washington), Dec. 13, 2016

The city of Spokane is cashing in on school zone violations after officials installed speed cameras near Finch Elementary and Longfellow Elementary last year. … The money will help the Spokane Police Department hire four additional neighborhood resource officers. … Other revenue will go to more school zone cameras. … Authorities say incidents in the areas near cameras have dropped 50 percent as drivers focus on their speed and safety. (KREM-TV CBS 2 image)

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School Bus Runs Red Light in Queens
WABC-TV ABC 7 (New York), Dec. 2, 2016

Exclusive video shows a school bus filled with kids about to run a red light and cross a busy street in Queens. The video shows that the driver waits for the right moment with the hazard signals blinking. It slowly inches forward and then drives straight through. (WABC-TV ABC 7 image)

 

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Anchorage Assemblyman Wants Red-Light Cameras
Alaska Dispatch News, Dec. 8, 2016

Anchorage Assembly member Dick Traini said he’s hoping to introduce an ordinance to the Assembly later this month to allow red-light cameras at city intersections. If the Assembly approves, a measure authorizing automatic red-light cameras would appear on the April city ballot. … “A lot of people are asking us, ‘What can you do about red-light runners?'” Traini said. “This is the only real thing we can do.” (Alaska Dispatch News image by Scott Jensen)

Principals See Red-Light Cameras as 1 Solution to Deadly Street
Queens Chronicle (New York), Dec. 8, 2016

Capt. Brian Bohannon and other members of the 106th Precinct were joined by officials from MS 202 and its sister school, the Robert H. Goddard High School, the Department of Transportation, the NYPD’s School Safety Division and representatives from area elected officials on  a site visit to the intersections where Jazmine Marin was hit and killed by a car on Oct. 24. … The principals requested a red-light camera be placed at the intersection to penalize motorists who disobey the traffic light.

 

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Truck Strikes 5-Year-Old Leaving School Bus
Winston-Salem Journal (North Carolina), Dec. 9, 2016

Police say a 5-year-old girl has been severely injured after a motorist drove past a stopped school bus. Sgt. Jake Katzenberger of the North Carolina Highway Patrol said the student was stuck Thursday afternoon on North Carolina Highway 210 as she was getting off the school bus. The bus’s stop arm was extended and the bus’s lights were flashing when the incident occurred.

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National Stop-Arm Campaign Urged at NHTSA Meeting
School Bus Fleet (national), Dec. 5, 2016

Illegal passing of school buses, also known as stop-arm running, was a recurring topic during the Dec. 1 meeting called by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), prompting industry officials to call on NHTSA to launch a national campaign targeting stop-arm running. (NHTSA image)

 

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ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety Unacceptable! 5-year-old NC girl hit by truck after getting off school bus. journalnow.com/news/state_reg… #StopArmSafety

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Retweet by ATS_RoadSafety Vision Zero Network @Visionzeronet  Thoughtful, well-researched piece explaining spike in U.S. traffic deaths, and why the U.S. lags behind Europe. (Vox.com image by Gina Ferazzi)

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Tolling Starts Dec. 30 on 3 Ohio River Bridges
The Courier-Journal (Kentucky), Dec. 13, 2016

It’s time to get those transponders — tolling on the Lincoln, Kennedy and East End bridges will officially start Dec. 30. And officials are encouraging drivers to set up their accounts this week. Read how this bridge project will save commuters billions, see Louisville Business First. (The Courier Journal image)

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It’s not Your Imagination. You Are Getting to Work Faster
The Boston Globe (Massachusetts), Dec. 7, 2016

The move to electronic tolling on the Massachusetts Turnpike has shaved about 12 minutes off morning commutes, state transportation officials said. More than 3 million transponders are now in circulation, a record, officials said. See related coverage at WBUR-Radio 90.9 FM. (WBUR-Radio 90.9 FM image)

 

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Commentary: School Bus Camera Skeptic Turns into Supporter
WKXW-Radio 101.5 FM (New Jersey), Dec. 7, 2016

When bill S-211 came along regarding placing cameras on school buses to catch people illegally passing them in New Jersey, I felt certain this was bad news. Not exactly the red-light camera program, but law enforcement through a lens and tickets in the mail nonetheless. … But after parents and school bus drivers called in and shared their real life stories I have to admit I was wrong. This dangerous behavior clearly is going on, and if S-211 would help stop it then it needs to become law.

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Letter to the Editor: Red-Light Cameras Are Just Common Sense
The Courier (Iowa), Dec. 14, 2016

Cedar Falls needs red-light cameras. If you are arguing about this proposal stripping your rights, I challenge you to put down your cell phone and pull over. You will have to stop at the red light with your phone down to make these observations. …. Watch the intersection cycle through one or two changes. That is all it will take for you to see poor light obedience.

 

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“If putting students in danger by passing a stopped bus is not enough alone to make someone stop, then maybe increasing the chances of getting caught will.”
Donna Maycumber, Safety Officer for the Jamesville-DeWitt School District
Eagle News Online (New York), Dec. 13, 2016

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“Many of the children who are killed and injured in school bus-related accidents are struck by drivers who illegally pass a bus while the red lights are flashing and the stop sign is extended. The sad truth is that many drivers choose to break the law in such a dangerous manner because they think they can get away with it. Installing cameras to catch every driver who passes a school bus illegally will be an effective deterrent.”
Jim Holzapfel, New Jersey State Senator, sponsor of bill S-211 authorizing a school bus stop arm safety camera pilot program
Brick Patch, Dec. 6, 2016

ATS’ Newsletter, Vol. 6, Issue 50

December 1st, 2016 Comments off

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New Numbers on Illegal School Bus Passing Staggering
CNYCentral.com (New York), Nov. 30, 2016

There are staggering new numbers available that reveal how often drivers are passing school buses with their stop signs out and red lights flashing. In one day in November, and in 32 districts statewide, school bus drivers reported being passed 883 times. That number includes 32 passes on the right side where students get off the bus. … The Liverpool Central School District Transportation Center director is concerned about the high number of illegal passes of stopped school buses and says the high number needs to be reduced.  (CNYCentral.com image)

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Vision Zero Focuses on Making Streets Safer
83degreesmedia.com (Florida), Nov. 29, 2016

Zero is the number on the tip of every tongue at the Hillsborough Metropolitan Planning Organization as the MPO shifts into gear for its biggest project of the fiscal year: launching the Vision Zero campaign. The idea that “one traffic death is too many” is the cornerstone of Vision Zero. … Solutions include stepping up DUI law enforcement, improving community perception of red light cameras, and working with schools to ensure children are getting to school safely. (The Tampa Tribune image by Jay Conner)

 

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ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety Check out @Visionzeronet‘s #WDR2016 photos! #SpeedKills

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ATS_RoadSafety @ATS_RoadSafety Check out ATS’ Report Card on School Bus #StopArmSafety as a reminder to drive safe around school buses! atsol.com/wp-content/upl

 

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Moody’s Projects Positive 2017 Outlook for US Toll Roads Industry
Moody’s Investors Service, Nov. 30, 2016

The outlook for the US toll road industry remains positive, reflecting the expectation of continued strong traffic and revenue growth in the next 12 to 18 months, according to Moody’s Investors Service in its yearly outlook. (San Francisco Chronicle/SF Gate.com image)

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Tolling Interstates a ‘Realistic Possibility’ for Indiana’s Future
WFYI-Radio 90.1 FM (Indiana), Nov. 30, 2016

Indiana’s roads task force may recommend the state begin tolling interstate highways. Previous debates over how to pay for Indiana’s infrastructure needs focused on fuel taxes, alternative fuel vehicle levies, and fees based on the number of miles someone drives. The discussion broadened at the second-to-last roads task force meeting. Engineer Steven Davidson recommends Indiana should explore tolling every interstate highway. “Now that would be implemented over a number of years as the interstate is either expanded, upgraded, rehabilitated,” Davidson said. (WFYI-Radio 90.1 FM/IPBS image by Brandon Smith)

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Non-Toll Users Benefit from MoPAC Express Lanes
KXAN-TV NBC 36 (Texas), Nov. 30, 2016

The agency that runs the MoPac Expressway is out with new numbers showing the opening of the northbound express lane in mid-October is speeding up travel times for commuters headed to north Austin. (KXAN-TV NBC 36 graphic)

 

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Letter to the Editor: Red-Light Runners Imperil Innocent Drivers
The Dallas Morning News/DallasNews.com (Texas), Nov. 30, 2016

Driving is a regulated activity on public roads. Red-light runners are putting innocent drivers in deadly peril every time they fly through an intersection on a red light. The accidents they cause are not fender-benders; they are high-speed collisions. Do I like cameras? No. Don’t like school speed zones, radar guns or school-bus stop signs, either. But do we need them? You betcha.

Letter: Photo Radar Could Fix Dangerous Roads
The Arizona Republic, Nov. 29, 2016

There is an inexpensive, effective way to reduce traffic deaths on Arizona freeways. I witnessed it in a Chinese city where everyone obeyed the speed limit. Why? lots of hidden photo enforcement and stiff fines for speeding. Our state legislators prefer the more expensive, less effective and more sporting alternative of random catch-as-catch-can by patrol cars, a preference paid for by the blood of their constituents.

Letter: Curb Traffic Problems with Cameras
The Journal News (New York), Nov. 29, 2016

Drivers today have formed a habit of going fast, no matter what the weather conditions, and they just don’t consider other drivers on the road for their safety. … Today, technology is all around us: We can place more speed cameras to catch speeding cars and trucks. Drivers that speed could collect a series of tickets and lose their licenses. Money raised from these tickets would be millions of dollars, and in the end our roads would be a lot safer.

Letter: Red-Light Cameras Work
The Dallas Morning News (Texas), Nov. 28, 2016

Red-light violations are drastically increasing in the metroplex. It is not unusual to see two or three vehicles racing through red lights. … Cameras clearly document traffic infractions. If we accept the argument that being found guilty by a camera is wrong, should we also disallow video of robberies or murders? … It isn’t fun to be caught running a red light, but the best and safest way to avoid the fine is not to run the light in the first place.