Automated traffic enforcement may be coming to St. Louis

Published: Sep. 18, 2023 at 1:27 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 18, 2023 at 10:11 PM CDT
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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) - Automated traffic enforcement may be coming to St. Louis in an attempt to make streets safer.

Monday morning, St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones was joined by Board of Alderman President Megan Green, Alderman Shane Cohn and Safe Streets advocates to announce new legislation to bring automated traffic enforcement to St. Louis as part of the St. Louis Safer Streets initiative. The automated traffic enforcement systems include red light and speed cameras. The legislation will need to be passed by the Board of Aldermen before Jones can sign off on it.

“From engineering on our streets to enhancing enforcement, St. Louis is working to make our city safer no matter how you choose to get around, across ages and abilities,” said Jones. “Automated traffic enforcement is a proven, effective tool used by hundreds of municipalities across the country to hold drivers accountable and improve safety on our streets. These programs save police time and resources while reducing contact between residents and officers.”

Highlights of the legislation include directing all fine revenue to infrastructure, driver education, and program administration, ensuring due process to fit the criteria outlined by the Missouri Supreme Court while protecting privacy rights and consistent evaluation and data analysis to ensure communities of color do not face a disproportionate amount of fines and fees.

The Safe Streets Initiative aims to improve street and pedestrian safety. So far this year, the St. Louis Police Department has conducted more than 20,000 traffic stops. St. Louis police report that 27 people have died in car crashes and four pedestrians have died while walking in the street in 2023.

Missouri Governor Mike Parson has given his support for red light cameras.

“We’ve got to use everything we can on the table to help solve crime in St. Louis,” Parson said. “Look, what happens in St. Louis, the crime in St. Louis, affects us all. Regardless of whether you live in this region or in the southwest where I do, we don’t want those crime rates to go up. Anything we can do to deter a crime, and I’ve been a supporter of that message ever since I’ve been governor. And I’m going to continue to do it. If you can’t have law and order and people don’t feel safe, that’s a problem.”