Reporting Monique Griego
BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Speed and red light cameras could soon be up and running again. In April, the city shut down the entire system after some cameras were caught issuing bad tickets.
Monique Griego has more.
After the cameras were shut down, the mayor created a task force to find out how to fix all the problems. Thursday, it issued its final report.
Trust in Baltimore’s traffic camera system took a big hit, after some cameras proved to be issuing false citations.
“I think broadly I’d like to see them reevaluated all together,” said John Rhodes, driver.
Ticketing errors last year led the city to switch vendors. But with the new set of cameras came a fresh set of inaccuracies. That forced the city to void thousands of tickets and completely shut down the system.
“I think the city did the right thing by obviously refunding motorists tickets in error and ultimately suspending the program,” said Ragina Averella, AAA Mid-Atlantic.
Because of all the problems with the old vendor and then the new vendor, the mayor created a task force to improve the system, and Thursday, it issued its final report.
The Automatic Traffic Violation Task Force issued several recommendations. They include adding and designating more officers to review tickets and to stop paying the vendor per citation, which some believe encourages inaccuracies.
The report also aims to improve camera placement and increase public awareness, which would make it easier for drivers to verify their citation is legitimate.
“The department is looking to incorporate as many of them as we can as we prepare to roll out this new and improved system.”
City transportation leaders say getting the cameras back up and running is a matter of public safety. But drivers don’t want to see the system green lighted until the city makes sure all its kinks are gone.
“When they’re not working and people are getting tickets, there’s seriously a problem,” a woman said.
As of right now, there’s no exact date to put the cameras back online.
The mayor still has to approve the recommendations. After that, the city will OK the cameras for a trial period so they can make sure there aren’t any problems.
City leaders say fixed cameras decreased speeding in most areas by nearly 80 percent.