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Can You Teach People To Slow Down?

After successful short-term and smaller scale campaigns in places like Visalia and Porterville, one California city is ready to take heightened traffic enforcement to the next level.

San Francisco Transportation Director Ed Reiskin recently unveiled a yearlong campaign that involves an additional 132 hours a week of traffic enforcement at twenty-six intersections; the Safe Speeds SF campaign may affect some other intersections as well, if program officials determine that excessive speed, or another traffic violation, is a persistent problem. Mr. Reiskin denied that SSSF is a revenue-driven initiative. “We don't want people to get tickets, we want people to slow down and obey the speed limit,” he insisted. Several agencies are working together in this effort, which is funded by a $2 million state government grant.

The program is part of San Francisco’s Vision Zero plan, which aims to end traffic deaths by 2024. Currently, the city averages about thirty traffic fatalities a year, and about half of them are pedestrians and bicyclists.

Saturation Enforcement

The city fathers are betting on research which insists that Selective Traffic Enforcement Programs (STEP campaigns) are an effective way to change driver habits. Generally, these STEP campaigns only last a few weeks, typically because money is so short and officer overtime, not to mention other related expenses, is so expensive. So, officials apparently believe that if a little is good, a lot is even better. As we all know, sometimes that’s true and sometimes it isn’t.

That second dynamic often comes into play when STEP-issued tickets go to court, because since they are under pressure to write lots of citations, officers sometimes write tickets when warnings are more appropriate. If there is not enough evidence to support the case, an attorney can have the ticket thrown out of court.

Getting Legal Help

The aggressive attorneys at Bigger & Harman, APC, are committed to giving individuals a voice when dealing with speeding and traffic tickets. Call today at 661-349-9300 or email attorney@markbigger.com to receive the personal professional attention you deserve. En español, llame al 661-349-9755.