PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — A bill that would extend and expand Philadelphia’s speed camera program moved out of the Pennsylvania House Transportation Committee this week.
The program, which is currently in use on Roosevelt Boulevard, is set to expire in December, but Philadelphia Democrat Ed Neilson is looking to change that with a bill that would not only get rid of the expiration date, but allow Philadelphia to expand the use of speed cameras beyond the boulevard.
“The largest problem with the program is that by restricting it to just one road, we have forced the worst offenders onto other streets throughout the community,” Neilson said.
The legislation would also make changes to the law that allows cameras on school buses to catch drivers who fail to stop for flashing red lights, and allow Philadelphia to use speed cameras in active school zones.
“I’ve received complaints almost every day about drivers racing through school zones, jeopardizing the safety of our children,” Neilson said.
“This will help the children be able to get to school safely. And we must do something.”
A study from the state Transportation Advisory Committee looked at crash data from Roosevelt Boulevard before and after the speed cameras were installed. It found a 36% decline of total crashes on the boulevard compared to a 6% decline in the rest of the city, and an 11% decrease in fatal crashes compared to a 16% increase in all of Philadelphia.
The House Transportation Committee advanced the bill to the full House with a unanimous vote. Separate legislation will consider speed cameras in active work zones. That law is set to expire next February.