City hopes to catch speeders twice as fast and fine them more

Posted: March 10, 2011 in Uncategorized
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One of Santa Fe Police Department's two speed enforcement SUVs. (Luis Sanchez Saturno/The New Mexican)

The City of Santa Fe has started to deploy its second speed SUV around town in an effort to cite more speeders (and to remind motorists not to speed because it’s all about awareness … at least goes the company line).

For now, while speed SUV No. 2 gets properly calibrated, only one SUV will be issuing citations and the daily  locations for that unit can be found on this blog at the “Where’s the speed SUV?” link at the top of the page.

The second well-decorated Ford Escape will start being fully operational (meaning issuing citations) next week, according to Capt. Anthony Robbin.

Meanwhile, the City Council on Wednesday approved to up all citations to an even $100 for tickets generated from the speed SUVs, according to Tom Sharpe’s article in Thursday’s New Mexican. Previously, some citations were just $86.

According to the article:

Robbins estimated that about 60 percent of the 12,000 speed-van tickets issued so far in Santa Fe have been paid. He said he didn’t know the collection rate for tickets issued by officers.

On Wednesday, the City Council voted 5-2 to amend sections of its traffic-operations code so that all tickets issued automatically by speed SUVs or red-light cameras will be $100. The city hasn’t installed any red-light cameras because the state Department of Transportation clamped down on the ability of cities to use them.

City statutes previously called for $100 fines only for drivers caught going more than 11 mph over the speed limit, but just $86 for driving 5 to 10 mph over the limit and only $66 for running a red light. Motorists can request community service in lieu of paying the fine.


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