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Federal Way to add school zone speed cameras

Post by Steve Maynard / The News Tribune on Nov. 27, 2009 at 10:40 am with 1 Comment »
November 27, 2009 4:13 pm

Federal Way will start using speed cameras in two school zones and three more red-light cameras at intersections Tuesday.

Violators will receive warnings for the first 30 days. Citations and fines will be issued starting Dec. 31.

The city’s first school zone cameras will be near Saghalie Middle School (21st Avenue Southwest) and at Twin Lakes Elementary School (Southwest 320th Street).

Federal Way also will start using three more red-light cameras at intersections Tuesday, with the same 30-day warning period in effect for those cameras until fines start Dec. 31.

One red-light camera will begin operating at southbound Pacific Highway South at South 312th Street. That’s the first red-light camera for that busy intersection.

In addition, two red-light cameras will begin operating for northbound and southbound traffic on Pacific Highway South at South 320th Street, making each direction of that intersection covered by a red-light camera.

The school zone cameras will take pictures and video of vehicles exceeding the school zone speed limit of 20 mph. Once citations start Dec. 31, the city will fine violators from $189 to $250 at the two schools, depending upon how many miles they are speeding over 20 mph, said city spokeswoman Linda Farmer said. The fine for running a red light is $124.

The goal of adding more cameras is increasing safety, not producing more revenue, said police Cmdr. Stan McCall.

He said red-light cameras already have cut down on accidents and injuries at the city’s two busiest intersections. They are: Pacific Highway South and South 320th Street and South 348th Street and Enchanted Parkway South.

Leave a comment Comments → 1
  1. davidkoenig says:

    “The goal of adding more cameras is increasing safety, not producing more revenue”, said police Cmdr. Stan McCall.

    For those of you who might believe this mumble mouth, let me suggest a donation of all net revenues from this program to the Federal Way School District. Another option is for the legislature to step in and take the revenue for the state general fund. I assure you that your head will spin at the speed cities move to divest themselves of this “safety” program.

    Then there are the legal problems. There are at least three existing lawsuits over the red light cameras; two of them are class action suits. The bottom line is that the more photo tickets Federal Way issues, the greater the future liability for the city when the court requires them to refund all ticket monies. One aspect of the lawsuit is that statute allows for the penalty to be at the rate of parking tickets. Cities banding together with sleazy attorneys assert that this means that they can charge the same amount that is charged for parking in a handicap spot. A seemingly convenient and all too clever manipulation for a program they insist is only about safety. This also in spite of stated legislative intent to the contrary, i.e. $20


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