Local leaders push for reinstated speed cameras outside of schools

Posted: Updated:

City Councilman Rafael Salamanca Jr. and other local leaders are calling for reinstated speed cameras outside of public schools in Hunts Point.

According to officials, the cameras remain on but are not set to ticket drivers. The speed camera legislation expired in July, and they are hoping to have a fix before the new school year begins.

“It’s politics at its worst and I don’t understand why state senators, the Republican side, are playing politics when we’re talking about saving lives,” Councilman Salamanca says.  

The current speed limit in a school zone is 20 mph. Officials say more than 132,000 cars were seen speeding since July.   

Harold Kahn, who lost his 22-year-old son Seth to a speeding driver in Manhattan, says he is angry about the lack of care to fix the issue.

“It’s like they don’t care that children will die,” Kahn says. “They'll get injured, God forbid it happens to another child, another family will have to go through and suffer.”

Some City Council members say they are also trying to push for a backup plan in case officials in Albany do not reinstate the cameras in time.

“We’re working with the NYPD – they have these speed camera signs that give you a warning as to how fast you’re driving,” Councilman Salamanca says. “But ultimately what really works is when you write that ticket and you get that $50 summons and you have to pay out of your pocket."

In a statement, the Department of Transportation says, "We are disappointed in the Senate's failure to renew and expand the speed camera program. It has more than enough support and our children's lives depend on their action."

The first day of classes for NYC public schools is Sept. 5.

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