Dallas Police eyes speed safety cameras as priority for legislative session

Dallas Police say the legalization of speed safety cameras, which would allow for speeding tickets to be mailed to drivers, would help reduce deadly crashes on city streets

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The Dallas Police Department says it supports a change in Texas law that would allow safety cameras to mail speeding tickets to drivers.

The idea is one of ten ideas the department identified as priorities for the 2025 legislative session in Austin.

Lieutenant Julio Gonzalez briefed the city council Public Safety Committee on the proposal and spoke with NBC 5 on Tuesday.

“We know that speed is one of the top contributing factors to fatal accidents everywhere in the state,” Gonzalez said.

“We want to be able to install speed safety cameras to have one more set of eyes on our roadways to make them safer.”

It’s an idea NBC 5 Investigates saw up close in Canada last fall, where safety officers in Edmonton use hand-held radar and cameras to send tickets to drivers in the mail. It’s also starting to catch on in the U.S., but the implementation varies from what’s seen north of the border.

The Federal Highway Administration says fixed safety cameras can reduce crashes by 54%. A fixed camera does not require a safety officer to be present to run radar, as is seen in Canada.

The FHA adds mobile units with a camera in a trailer or vehicle, which could reduce injury and fatal crashes by one-fifth on major city streets.

The U.S. Department of Transportation says using fixed cameras has already reduced speeding in New York City school zones by 63%.

Six California cities recently received approval for a 5-year pilot program to use speed safety cameras on city streets.

However, in Texas, using safety cameras would require changing the state’s transportation code to make them legal.

“We would need this to be authorized to install these speed safety cameras,” Gonzalez said.

Public safety committee members expressed support for the idea in a limited discussion this week. District 13 Councilmember Gay Donnell Willis said speeding on Dallas streets is one of the most frequent complaints received from constituents.

“When it comes to automated speed safety cameras, I think we have to do this,” Willis said.

“We are all suffering, our whole community.”

The DPD legislative priorities and the city of Dallas’ top priorities for the 2025 session are expected to be presented to the full council later this summer.

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