City Council considers school zone speed cameras - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

City Council considers school zone speed cameras

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Speed cameras could start being tested at schools in late spring. Speed cameras could start being tested at schools in late spring.
SPOKANE, Wash. -

There will be a resolution tonight at 6 p.m. at the City Council meeting regarding the pilot program for school speed zone cameras.

The City of Spokane, School District and the Spokane Police Department have named Longfellow Elementary and Finch Elementary as the two schools which would most benefit from the pilot program.

"Those were the two that really rose to the top right away," says City Councilmember Jon Snyder, "because they have pretty busy arterials that go by their schools. They also have 20 mph flashers and a history of speeding incidents there."

Isabelle Anderson, a crossing guard at Longfellow, describes the intersection of Empire and Nevada as "very hectic and chaotic." "The drivers don't like to stop when they're supposed to. Failure to stop, failure to slow down," says Anderson.

Kristin Herrmann's daughter attends Longfellow and she says she never lets her walk to school without a parent. "There's been speeders that barely have missed kids, missed the crosswalkers. It's not a safe intersection."

Councilman Snyder says the program would operate a lot like the "photo red" program. Once the cameras are installed police would review a twelve second video clip and a still photo to see if there was a violation. If valid, the offender would pay a fine but no points would be docked on the license.

Snyder says this program could make an instrumental difference in safety.

"We've got over 30 schools in Spokane. Public schools including private schools as well and all of those children need safe ways to get to school," says Snyder.

According to Snyder there would be minimal cost upfront for the city. The technology vendor will incur the cost of the equipment and those costs will be reimbursed with proceeds from the program -- the remainder going to the city.

Anderson says she believes the cameras would make a big difference. "It would definitely stop the red light runners from running red lights while we're trying to cross."

Cameras could start being tested at the schools in late spring.

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