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  • Pima County Supervisors vote to shut down speed cameras

    Jan 07, 2014 | Read More News
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    The Pima County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday voted to shut down all 11 speed enforcement cameras in the County.

    The Supervisors directed County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry to return to the Board within 30 days with information about a more comprehensive, countywide traffic safety plan.

    The County’s contract with American Traffic Solutions (ATS) was awarded in January 2009 and expired on Jan. 6, 2014.

    Reviews of the program by the Pima County Department of Transportation and the Pima County Sheriff’s Department found no conclusive evidence that fixed, stand-alone cameras effectively and consistently reduce speeds or crashes because drivers tend to decrease speed near the camera and then accelerate after passing.

    As a result, the number of citations has declined over the contract period from 39,997 in 2009 to 15,498 in the first nine months of 2013. The net revenue from the citations, which was deposited in the general fund, also declined.

    The State of Arizona received more than half of each fine because of surcharges imposed by state law. For example, in the case of a $239.25 photo enforcement fine – the most common fine, which was imposed for exceeding the speed limit by 11-15 mph – state surcharges amounted to $126.73, leaving Pima County with $112.52, of which about 58 percent, or $65, was paid to ATS.

    Transportation’s review found that the crash rate at the 11 camera locations decreased only 13 percent during a three-period when the crash rate for the entire County road system decreased 19 percent.

    The severity rate of crashes at the 11 camera locations decreased less than 1 percent while the severity rate of crashes system-wide decreased 11 percent.

    Starting today, ATS has begun to cover the warning signs and turn off the camera strobes at the 11 locations and should be complete by the close of business day tomorrow.

    The Pima County Department of Transportation and ATS are in the process of formulating a schedule for removal of the cameras and signs. It is anticipated it will take a few months for full equipment removal.