Ald. Khalif J. Rainey, (414) 286-2863
Ald. Cavalier Johnson, (414) 286-3777
Alderman Khalif J. Rainey and Alderman Cavalier “Chevy” Johnson will be joined by state Rep. David Crowley during a news conference at 1 p.m. tomorrow(Tuesday, October 17) at City Hall focused on pushing for state approval to allow automated traffic enforcement in the City of Milwaukee.
The news conference will be held in the first floor rotunda at City Hall, 200 E. Wells St. Media coverage is invited.
Earlier this year Rep. Crowley partnered with colleague Rep. Dale Kooyenga to propose “The Automated Traffic Enforcement Act” in the state Legislature. The bill – supported by Alderman Rainey and Alderman Johnson – would alter state law to allow the City of Milwaukee and the Milwaukee Police to install and use red-light cameras at intersections and automated speed enforcement systems to help reduce reckless driving.
“We need to be able to use the tools that work to reduce reckless driving and to help our citizens feel safe again on our streets,” Alderman Rainey said. “We are hoping state legislators will support the Automated Traffic Enforcement Act and move quickly to allow us to use the technology to curb reckless driving.”
Under current state law, police departments statewide are prohibited from using cameras to enforce traffic signals and stationary speed enforcement cameras to ticket reckless drivers. Over the last eight years Milwaukee has seen a 73% increase in traffic fatalities accompanied by 60% decrease in traffic citations.
Reckless driving news conference/ADD ONE
Utilizing automated traffic enforcement systems will guarantee stricter enforcement of traffic laws, reduced costs of traffic enforcement, and allow an already understaffed and over-worked police department to focus on larger crime problems throughout the city.
“Most importantly though, we are convinced that allowing Milwaukee to use the automated technology where needed will save lives,” Alderman Johnson said.
A recently published study in the Journal of Safety Research demonstrated that large cities with red-light cameras have 21% fewer fatal crashes caused by red light running. Also, the National Traffic Safety Board holds that automated speed enforcement can reduce speed-related crashes, injuries, and fatalities as well.
According to Rep. Crowley, using similar data regarding areas of concern for excessive speeding, MPD could also set up automated speed enforcement areas that would ticket drivers who were driving recklessly over the speed limit. This would lower the speed of drivers in these areas and give pause to potential reckless driving throughout the city.