American Traffic Solutions, the leading red-light safety camera provider in Florida, reminds Florida drivers that several important red-light safety camera changes are now in effect.
These changes include new provisions for right-turn-on-red violations, updates to Notice of Violations and new associated challenge procedures, and slight modifications to requirements for issuing Uniform Traffic Citations.
Currently, more than 70 communities across the state use red-light safety camera programs to help enhance road safety. The changes to the Mark Wandall Traffic Safety Act are a result of a bill overwhelmingly approved by the Florida Legislature earlier this year and signed into law by Gov. Rick Scott. Communities that have not yet adopted a new ordinance reflecting the changes in the law will continue to capture events but will not issue violations until the ordinance is approved.
Mark Wandall, a 30-year-old Bradenton man, was killed by a red-light runner in 2003 and is survived by his wife, Melissa Wandall, who was pregnant with their daughter at the time of his death. The Wandall Traffic Safety Act focuses on saving lives and reducing dangerous red-light running in Florida, and is now amended for:
• Right-on-red violations — Right-turnon- red violations can still be issued if the driver fails to make the turn in a “careful and prudent manner.” The amendment further defines issuance standards by prohibiting violations for failing to stop before crossing over the stop line or another point at which a stop is required. In other words, if the driver comes to a complete stop before or after the stop line and before turning right, then a violation will not be issued.
• Extended hearing request timeframe — Persons who receive a notice of violation for running a red light now have either 60 days to pay the violation or request a hearing. No payment or fee is required before the hearing if one has been requested.
• Local hearing officers — Cities and counties now need to appoint their own local hearing officer. Local governments may recoup the costs for this service by assessing administrative hearing fees of up to an additional $250, in addition to the $158 statutory penalty.
• Transfers of Liability and Uniform Traffic Citations — Previously, the law allowed a person who received the ticket to transfer the violation to the person who was driving the vehicle, but the transfer was only possible as a Uniform Traffic Citation, which carries a higher fee. This no longer applies. Now a Notice of Violation or a UTC can be reissued by the owner of the vehicle to the person who was driving and a new Notice of Violation will be issued. AUTC will only be issued if the alleged violator fails to request a hearing, pay the fine or transfer the liability within 60 days of issuance.
The Mark Wandall Traffic Safety Act was signed into law in 2010. It created uniform standards for the use of cameras for the purposes of traffic enforcement, and designated a portion of the funds from traffic violations to the state, the Brain and Spinal Cord Injury Trust Fund and the Department of Health Administrative Trust Fund, which supports trauma centers. Under the statute, a red-light running fine is $158. There are no points attached to a red-light running violation issued under the Wandall Act.
Additional information about the changes and the new process can be found at www.atsol.com/hb7125/