City seeks input on mobile speed enforcement proposal

The city of Albuquerque is considering using mobile speed enforcement technology on Albuquerque’s streets. (Eddie Moore/Albuquerque Journal)

As city officials consider putting mobile, automated cameras on Albuquerque streets to catch speeding drivers, they want to know what the public thinks.

The city is hosting a trio of public input sessions in August:

City Councilors Brook Bassan, Isaac Benton, Klarissa Peña and Lan Sena recently introduced legislation to create a new “automated speed enforcement” program that would use mobile devices to identify speeders.

A city of Rio Rancho mobile speed monitoring unit is positioned along Northern Boulevard. Albuquerque officials are considering putting mobile, automated cameras on Albuquerque streets to catch speeders, and they want to know what the public thinks of the idea (Source: Rio Rancho Observer)

“The City Council finds that automated speed enforcement (ASE) offers a high rate of detection and, in conjunction with education, traffic engineering, and law enforcement measures, it can significantly improve traffic safety and prevent traffic-related fatalities and injuries,” says the legislation, which notes that excessive speed was considered the biggest contributing factor in 8% of fatal crashes between 2014 and 2018.

According to the bill, violations — which would require a police officer’s validation — would result in a $100 fine, though the vehicle owner can contest it through an administrative hearing process.

Benton said councilors plan to attend the community input sessions and that feedback could help refine the legislation as it works its way through the council’s consideration process.

“We put the bill out there and, as with many items of legislation, it will be open to amendment,” Benton said.

The city already has begun seeking public input on automated speed enforcement and on Friday released the results of an online questionnaire completed by approximately 3,500 people between June 25 and July 16.

Over 60% of the respondents showed support when asked in separate questions if the technology should be deployed to “reduce traffic fatalities and injuries” and “to free up police officers’ time to fight violent crime.”

More than half (55%) of respondents said the city should post the location of mobile speed cameras on the city’s website.

A plurality of respondents (46%) said the speed threshold for related citations should be 10 mph over the speed limit, nearly twice as many as said it should be 5 mph.

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