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Red-light cameras get green light

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  • | 4:00 a.m. August 9, 2012
  • Sarasota
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The Sarasota Police Department is giving the green light for the installation of red-light cameras within city limits.

Currently, seven red-light cameras, located at four Sarasota intersections, are taking pictures and video cars that run a red light in those locations.

Currently, all red-light cameras in Sarasota are operated by the city of Sarasota but soon red-light cameras will be installed by the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office in other locations, including South Tamiami Trail and Bee Ridge Road.

Sarasota Police officer John Lake warned motorists that the registered owner of a car that runs a red light is responsible for paying the $158 Notice of Violation fine, regardless of whether the owner was driving the car at that time.

The Notice of Violation is not considered an actual ticket and therefore adds no violation points to your driver’s license. However, those who don’t pay the Notice of Violation fine within 30 days get their notice upgraded to an official ticket that garners a $264 fine and four points on your driver’s license.

The current operating red-light cameras have been in operation since Dec. 1 and, since that time, there have been 10,806 violations recorded through June, said Lake. Of those violations, 1,894 people haven’t paid their fine in the allotted amount of time and have had their notice upgraded to a uniform traffic citation with a larger fine.

The city pays a monthly camera fee of approximately $4,700 per camera. The violation and traffic citation fees collected, pay for the camera usage fees.

How do red-light cameras work?
Each intersection is outfitted with a high-resolution, high-speed digital camera. The cameras are activated by sensors that sit 150 feet behind the stoplight. The sensors detect the speed of the vehicles and know when a vehicle is going too fast to stop at the light before it turns red. The cameras take two digital photos and a video, which document the violation. The program operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week and in all weather conditions. Intersections equipped with red-light cameras are marked with signs. The city of Sarasota Police Department reviews every violation before a Notice of Violation is issued. A Notice of Violation contains an image of a violating vehicle before it enters the intersection, while it is in the intersection and the license plate of the vehicle. Violators are also given a website where they can review their vehicle running the red light.

MAP: Red Light Cameras in Sarasota
Red markers denote active red light cameras. Yellow markers denote red light cameras that are coming soon. Click on the markers to read which direction the cameras are facing.

View Red Light Cameras in Sarasota in a larger map


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