The September issue of the Road Safety Ink encapsulates the latest strides in road safety, reflecting a shared commitment to creating secure and efficient transportation systems. Key highlights include the City of Yonkers’ Yonkers Safe Stop School Bus Safety Program Announcement, Atlanta Public Schools School Zone Speed Safety Program protects school zones as program issues citations to speeders, and Pennsylvania’s speed safety camera program touts significant reduction in injuries and fatalities due to traffic enforcement. Additionally, we share an insightful article by Jon Baldwin in ITS International on the adoption of automated enforcement for safer roads in the U.S.
City Of Yonkers Partners With Verra Mobility To Launch Largest School Bus Safety Program In Westchester County
Yonkersny.gov, New York, September 20, 2023
Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano today announced its collaboration with Verra Mobility to launch the “Yonkers Safe Stop” School Bus Safety Program. To create a safer environment, the “Yonkers Safe Stop” program will implement Verra Mobility’s CrossingGuard™ school bus stop-arm enforcement solution to effectively capture stop-arm events and reduce the number of violations and injuries caused by people who disregard the school bus stop-arm.
“Ensuring the safety of our children is our top priority. The partnership with Verra Mobility and the Yonkers School District is a testament to our commitment to their well-being, reminding us that every journey to knowledge should be a safe one,” said Mayor Spano.
Melba Rivera-Irizarry, Global Director of Product Management at Verra Mobility, expressed her enthusiasm for the partnership, stating, “At Verra Mobility, we are dedicated to creating safer streets for everyone. The ‘Yonkers Safe Stop’ Program exemplifies our commitment to protecting our most precious passengers. We are honored to work alongside the City of Yonkers on this vital initiative.”
11 alive, Georgia, September 15, 2023
Tickets will now be issued starting Monday morning for those who speed inside Atlanta Public Schools zones after speeding cameras were installed, according to the district.
“Our priority is to keep our students safe. The school zone speed cameras will help slow drivers down, thereby protecting children as they walk to and from school,” Atlanta Public Schools Police Chief Ronald Applin said.
APD has a contract with Verra Mobility, the makers of the cameras, and have installed the cameras at no cost to the school. Officials said that a percentage of the paid fines will fund future safety projects for the district.
“Part of making Atlanta the best place to raise a child in the nation is ensuring their safety both in and out of the classroom,” Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens said. “The new school zone speed safety camera program is a great compliment to our Vision Zero initiative to eliminate traffic fatalities and serious injuries in Atlanta.”
For more information about APS’s school zone speed safety camera program, please visit here.
News From The States, Pennsylvania, September 18, 2023
Pennsylvania transportation officials told lawmakers that pilot programs for the automatic enforcement of traffic laws have led to improvements in traffic safety over the last three years.
Philadelphia recorded 21% fewer fatalities and 64% fewer pedestrian crashes on Roosevelt Boulevard between August 2020 and November 2022, a Philadelphia deputy managing director for transportation, infrastructure and sustainability, also named Mike Carroll, said.
Speeding violations have also decreased by 95%, the Philadelphia official said.
The Philadelphia speed camera program sunsets in December.
ITS International, National, September 12, 2023
The concept of Vision Zero has hit a pothole in the US – but there is hope for a safer future, says Jon Baldwin, executive vice president, government solutions, at Verra Mobility
Given what we know now, I have to ask why we think it’s OK for so many people to die each year, when we have the technology, the laws and the best practices from other regions we can use to make our roads safer? Automated enforcement programmes have shown remarkable effectiveness in reducing crashes and changing driver behavior. As NY puts it, “Your Choices Matter.” Helping to educate drivers about local laws and improve awareness of how fast they’re travelling will help drivers make better choices and improve road safety for everyone.
WLRN, Florida, September 18, 2023
Miami−Dade Commissioner Anthony Rodriguez said his proposal to set up cameras to enforce speed limits in school zones — and impose fines on violators — will bolster the safety of tens of thousands of local schoolchildren.
“This is something that will ultimately save lives. And in doing so, I’m a big advocate for that,” Rodriguez told WLRN’s South Florida Roundup on Friday in an interview. Rodriguez represents District 10 on the commission.
Fox40, California, September 19, 2023
Newsom has until Oct. 14 to either sign or veto the bill. If signed into law, California’s pilot program under the AB 645 will last five years. For the six participating areas, the bill requires transportation agencies to issue warnings rather than notices of violation to drivers for the first 60 days of the program, coinciding with a month-long public information campaign to help educate residents about the new cameras.
“Research has shown speed cameras can reduce crashes by 54% in urban cores, especially high-injury and fatality crashes,” Assemblymember Laura Friedman (D-Burbank) added. “That’s why seven other states with Democratic and Republican governors have authorized or expanded the use of speed cameras this year.”
According to data from the National Transportation Safety Board, areas that implemented automated speed enforcement saw a decrease in the number of crashes that occurred — anywhere from 8 to 49% for all collisions and 11 to 44% for those that resulted in serious or fatal injuries.
In cities like Los Angeles, speed is the No. 1 factor in crash severity.
” … every year for the past five years, more than 1,000 Californians have died in speed-related traffic collisions,” Los Angeles officials wrote in support of AB 645. “These deaths and injuries are preventable. Jurisdictions suffering from high levels of avoidable fatal and severe collisions are desperate for additional tools to bring the number of traffic deaths down to zero.”
SafeRoads.org, National, September 15, 2023
Advocates urges California Gov. Gavin Newsom to sign into law Assembly Bill (AB) 645. This bill would authorize six cities to establish a pilot program for automated enforcement (AE), a proven and lifesaving technology, to deter speeding, a leading killer on California roadways.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Pennsylvania, September 16, 2023
The House Transportation Committee has approved legislation that would keep a program authorizing speed cameras in work zones.
Work zone crashes are 50% less likely to happen in work zones with speed cameras in place, PennDOT data shows. And of the 444,000 violators given tickets by the work zone speed cameras in 2022, 81% were first time offenders, who receive warning notices and aren’t required to pay fines. That suggests that motorists who receive the first-time offender warning notices are slowing down so they don’t get second offenses that would bring a ticket and a fine, he said.
San Diego Union-Tribune, September 18, 2023
As a society, we have become numb to the news of another person hit and killed on our roads. Traffic violence kills on average five people every week in San Diego County and kills an average of 3,744 people every year in California. Each of these people is someone’s loved one, someone who never thought it could happen to their family. Many of these deaths can be traced back to a single source: speeding.
As the co-founder of Families for Safe Streets San Diego, we stand firmly behind AB 645. This bill will save lives. Please tell the governor to support it and demand that San Diego be added as a pilot city as soon as possible. Don’t wait until traffic violence impacts you or kills your family member to do something about it.