Traffic cam tickets drop under 11,000

Traffic cam tickets drop under 11,000

PAWTUCKET – As the city approaches a new deadline of Oct. 28 for the launch of a traffic camera ticket program, the numbers are showing somewhat of a decline.

According to Wilder Arboleda, spokesman for Mayor Donald Grebien, there were fewer than 11,000 warnings issued to drivers over five days last week, with the majority of those for violations in school speed zones. About 250 of them were issued to motorists running red lights.

That 11,000 figure is down from 15,000 violations the previous week, and it is the “lowest event total” of any week to date since the preliminary warning program went into effect Aug. 28, according to Arboleda.

The Breeze reported last week that officials were putting off real tickets for another month as they worked to further educate the public on the program, which issues violations for anyone going 31 miles per hour or faster in a 20-mile-per-hour school zone. The majority of violations are occurring in school zones on Newport Avenue and Smithfield Avenue.

For the week prior to the 15,000 violations, there were 12,000 warnings issued. There were 13,000 violations in the first week of the program in early September, but that was over four days.

For comparison, a similar program in Providence, where the speed required for a $50 ticket is also 31 miles per hour, saw 12,000 tickets issued in 33 days last year.

Even at 11,000 total violations, the amount of revenue coming in from the program if actual tickets were being handed out would be $550,000 for one week.

The new traffic camera enforcement program in Pawtucket was intended to start Sept. 28, but was delayed so officials could continue informing the public about slowing down in school zones. This program is not intended as a revenue generator, say members of Grebien’s administration, but as a way to enhance safety for local students.