New program will catch drivers who speed through construction zones | Connecticut News


(WFSB) — Eyes should always be on the road, but now there will be some on you.

The Department of Transportation will launch a pilot program next summer that will take a picture of your car if you speed by a highway work zone.

A camera will grab a picture of your car if you go over the posted work zone speed limit by 15 miles per hour or more. The first time you will be warned. The second time there’s a $75 fine. The third, a fine of $150.

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Car owners could appeal these tickets.

“It will be a busy year because the passing of the infrastructure bill we will have additional jobs we will have more workers out on the road,” said Kafi Rouse, chief communications officer at the Dept. of Transportation.

So, to protect workers, the state passed a pilot program in the 2021 legislation. Three cameras stationed around work sites to prevent the nearly 900 crashes and four deaths reported in work zones last year.

“The state police are being stretched too thin. There are 19 folks in the traffic unit these days who were being asked to do the job that 62 troopers were doing in 2010,” said State Senator Will Haskell.

The bill passed says once the picture is taken, that info will be given to police for review. If they authorize the alleged violation, the notice will be sent to the car owner before 30 days via mail.

On top of less stress for police, Haskell said this will reduce traffic interactions.

“By automating that process, I think we create another level of equity in our justice system because that camera isn’t going to care about the color or race of the person driving the car,” Haskell said.

State police is working with the DOT on the project, but an attorney with the state troopers union says they are disappointed.

Attorney Andrew Matthews said it’s the state troopers’ job to enforce, adding this program is an attack on law enforcement. They add that soon they will be starting an education campaign on why it’s wrong.

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