A candid camera you don’t want to be on
Colorado Springs pollce are about to deploy a device that can detect the speed of passing cars and take pictures of them - which could lead to their registered owners having to pay fines if they're going too fast.
The unit will be inside what's called a “mobile speed van,” which police plan to move to different locations around the city.
The van will be on duty initially April 5 for a 30-day “warning period” in which violators will be mailed warnings only, a police press release states.
The “regular enforcement phase” is scheduled to start May 5. At that time, people driving past the van at 5 to 9 mph over the speed limit will receive warnings, while those going 10 mph over or more will be mailed “penalty assessment notices,” the release states.
Fines for these notices are listed as follows: $40 in neighborhoods, construction zones and municipal parks; and $80 in school zones. No points will be assessed, the release adds.
Similar programs are now in use in Boulder and Denver, according to Sgt. Steve Noblitt of the CSPD.
The city website states that the van is provided by a “consultant” and costs $5,200 per month to operate. “Any funds collected above that amount are received by the city. If the van does not generate $5,200, the consultant receives only the lesser amount.”
The mobile speed van is part of CSPD's response to a City Council ordinance last June authorizing the department to develop a city Focus on Safety program. Already operating are cameras at four intersections to identify red light violators.
The automated system will help make roads safer at a time when city police are short-staffed in terms of traffic enforcement, Noblitt said. “The use of this technology will allow us to deploy our motorcycle officers to critical incidents and still enforce speed limits in essential community areas,” he said.
A photo of the van is not available because the vehicle is “not marked yet,” Noblitt said, in answer to a Westside Pioneer question.
Westside Pioneer/press release