Neilson introduces legislation to target speeding in Pennsylvania

Says the numbers speak for themselves that the programs work

State Rep. Ed Neilson, chair of the PA House Transportation Committee, has introduced legislation (H.B. 1284) to make Pennsylvania’s automated speed enforcement programs in active work zones and along Roosevelt Boulevard in Philadelphia permanent. Without legislative action, these programs are scheduled to expire in February 2024 and December 2023 respectively.

“We’re on a tight deadline to make this happen,” Neilson said. “I look forward to working with my House colleagues to eliminate these deadlines.”

The Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement program, first implemented in March 2020, uses vehicle-mounted systems to detect and record motorists exceeding posted work zone speed limits by 11 miles per hour or more using electronic speed timing devices in active work zones.

According to the AWZSE Annual Legislative Report, speeding in AWZSE enforced work zones has been reduced to 17.2% for all traffic, and excessive speeding (11+ mph over the posted speed limit) has been reduced to 2.6% since the start of the program.

The Automated Speed Enforcement program on Roosevelt Boulevard in Philadelphia, first implemented in June 2020, uses cameras to detect and record motorists exceeding the posted speed limit by 11 miles per hour or more along the boulevard. Crashes along Roosevelt Boulevard have declined by 36% since speed cameras were deployed, while total crashes in the rest of the city, where there are no speed cameras, have only declined by 6%.

Neilson said his legislation would also expand the Roosevelt Boulevard program to allow for speed cameras on any road in Philadelphia at locations approved by city ordinance and PennDOT.

“The numbers show that these programs work to stop reckless driving and save lives,” Neilson said. “The safety of drivers, construction workers and our students are a huge priority of mine; we must eliminate these expiration dates to preserve the safety of Pennsylvanians while on our roads and highways.”

Additionally, Neilson said his bill would make necessary fixes to current law allowing school districts to use school bus stop-arm cameras to enforce the law prohibiting passing a school bus while students are getting on or off and establish a new five-year pilot program for speed cameras in active school zones in Philadelphia at locations approved by city ordinance and PennDOT.

“The safety of our students is of utmost importance,” Neilson said. “Many students who walk to school have to cross dangerous roads and intersections; this legislation expanded to school zones would potentially save student lives.”