Ridgeland Mayor speaks out about speed camera system

By Jaime Dailey - bio | email

RIDGELAND, SC (WTOC) - Mayor Gary Hodges says while the cameras are drawing criticism, he says the town is playing by the rules and that the cameras are doing what they're designed to do, slow drivers down.

For the past four months, the speed enforcement cameras have been helping police officers capture speeders along Interstate 95 in Ridgeland. When a driver exceeds 81 miles per hour, the system activates.

The first camera captures the front of the vehicle and the driver. The second camera shoots the rear license plate. Using that information, officers are able to pull the driver's picture, their name and address to send them a traffic ticket in the mail.

Mayor Hodges says while they're drawing a lot of negative press, the town is not breaking the law or cheating the state out of any money from the traffic tickets. He says this innovative approach to speed enforcement is working and they plan on continuing.

"This is all about changing driver behavior through our section of responsibility," said Mayor Hodges. "It's working so we're not trying to put anyone in jail or do anything like that. we're just trying to get your attention and apparently, what we're doing is working cause they are certainly slowing down, the accidents are less, the fatalities are zero, what else can we do to show the thing is working."

Over the past few months, Ridgeland has mailed about 3,000 to 4,000 tickets. That's about twice as many as before.

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