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Speed Cameras Could Soon Be Coming Near New York City Schools

Bloomberg, Sadik-Khan: Legislation Will Save Lives
FILE - A speed camera (Photo by Ian Waldie/Getty Images)

FILE – A speed camera (Photo by Ian Waldie/Getty Images)

ALBANY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — New York State lawmakers have approved a bill allowing the city to install speed cameras in front of New York City schools.

The state Senate approved legislation early Saturday to install the cameras at 20 city locations. The State Assembly passed the bill Friday afternoon, followed by the state Senate early Saturday.

The cameras would be installed at 20 locations near schools with documented speeding issues, lawmakers said.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg is a strong supporter of the proposal, pointing out that speed is the greatest contributing factor in traffic deaths in the city.

While traffic deaths in the city have fallen by over 30 percent in the past decade, speeding continues to be a problem and the city has advocated in Albany for the authority to install speed cameras, Bloomberg said in a statement.

“If a driver strikes a child at 40 miles per hour, there is a 70 percent chance the child will be killed. At 30 miles per hour, there is an 80 percent chance the child survives,” Bloomberg said in the statement.

“Decreasing the number of drivers who speed is a proven life-saving measure – and this legislation, which will place speed cameras at 20 key locations throughout our city, will ensure that we continue to protect some of our most vulnerable New Yorkers.”

Under the law, $50 fines would be authorized for dangerous speeding. The cameras would not photograph drivers, but would capture license plate numbers.

City Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan said the measure would save lives – particularly when combined with existing red light cameras.

“The Department of Transportation released a map earlier this year documenting 100 locations where 75 percent of vehicles were documented speeding within a quarter-mile of New York City schools,” she said. “One hundred and twenty-nine jurisdictions across the nation currently use speed cameras, which take pictures of speeding cars that are then used to issue violations.”

The measure now goes to Gov. Andrew Cuomo for his signature.

In March, Bloomberg was furious when some lawmakers blocked the speed camera proposal at the time.

“Frankly, reckless and negligent is some senators blocking our ability to save lives of our kids with speed cameras,” Bloomberg told reporters, including WCBS 880’s Jim Smith in March.

The New York City Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association came out against speed cameras in the city.

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