Albuquerque Officials Hope To Bring Back Traffic Cameras

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Officials in Albuquerque hope to bring back automated traffic cameras after the city discontinued a traffic camera system about a decade ago.

The Albuquerque Journal reports that a proposed new system, unlike the widely disliked red light camera system previously used by the city, would be mobile and target only speeding vehicles — although not low-level speeders going a few miles over the limit.

Officials say the new system would be put in place to confront speeding and racing on city streets. Joseph Viers, the Albuquerque police commander for traffic and motor units, one-third of all fatal crashes in Albuquerque involve excessive speed.

Violators would receive citations that are civil, rather than criminal, and they would be handled administratively, “basically like parking tickets,” Mayor Tim Keller said on Tuesday.

Citations would be reviewed before being mailed, and motorists who receive citations would have access to an appeal process. People who cannot afford fines would be offered alternatives, such as community service. In the previous system, tickets went to the registered vehicle owner.

An ordinance creating the system and providing for traffic penalties would be subject to approval from the Albuquerque City Council.

In 2011, Albuquerque discontinued its association with Redflex Traffic Systems, the Arizona-based company that operates the automated speed cameras, and its camera system.