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Let’s win speed safety cameras with Assembly Bill 645

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Speed kills – and every tool possible is needed to #SlowOurStreets

When drivers go dangerous speeds, the risk for you and me and our loved ones skyrockets.

Speed continues to be the #1 cause of severe and fatal traffic crashes in San Francisco and statewide.

And while countless existing speed solutions are being underutilized on our streets (see our report), there is an important speed tool that’s currently illegal in the state of California: speed safety cameras.

Walk San Francisco and San Francisco Bay Area Families for Safe Streets have worked for years to pass state legislation to allow these cameras to be piloted in California cities. But a bill has yet to make it to the Governor’s desk.

Assemblymember Laura Friedman has introduced Assembly Bill 645 in the California Legislature in hopes of finally changing that – and we’re going to do everything we can to support it (and hope you will, too) – including going to the State Capitol.

Sign up for our trip to Sacramento to talk with legislators about AB 645 on Wednesday, April 12

Speed safety cameras save lives

Other cities in the United States have already embraced speed safety cameras, including Portland, Washington D.C., New York City, and Seattle. Speed detection systems dramatically shift behavior and can reduce the number of severe and fatal crashes by as much as 51%.

About AB 645 (Friedman)

Walk SF is proud to be sponsoring AB 645. The bill in its current form would allow San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Jose, Oakland, Glendale, and Long Beach to pilot cameras on a limited number of dangerous streets and in school zones.

The bill includes important equity and privacy considerations. AB 645 fines start at $50 for going 11 mph over the speed limit. Those living under the poverty line must be offered an 80% reduction in that fine and community service. Cities are required to work with advocacy groups representing disadvantaged communities on the placement of the cameras.

Cameras can only take pictures of a person’s license plate, and the pictures have to be destroyed 60 days after the final disposition of the violation. And importantly, revenue from fines would have to be spent on street safety improvements that prevent speeding (like narrowing lanes, adding speed humps, or left turn calming).

Related to this bill, a new analysis on racial profiling in traffic stops from the Public Policy Institute of California points to speed safety cameras as an effective tool in reducing speed-related crashes and also reducing discretion in enforcement decisions.

How you can help the #PassAB645 campaign succeed

We’re inviting anyone interested in bringing their voice to Sacramento to join us in Sacramento on Wednesday, April 12. We will focus on members of the two committees that present the first hurdle for AB 645, Privacy and Transportation, but aim to stop at every legislator’s office. Learn more and RSVP.

Please donate in support of Walk SF’s work to win solutions to #SlowOurStreets.