A new campaign by public transit advocacy group TransportationAlternatives (T.A.) would place hundreds of speed cameras intraffic lights throughout the city, and some members of CommunityBoard 7 want Sunset Park to be among the first neighborhoods to getone or two of them.
CB7 Chairperson Fred Xuereb brought up the issue at last monthsPublic Safety Committee meeting, suggesting that the board getinput from the 72nd Precinct to write a request letterfor the cameras. The committee and later the full board votedto approve the suggestion.
The cameraswould snap a photo of speeding vehicles and their license plates.Xuereb contends that as Third and Fifth avenues are heavilytrafficked by drivers and pedestrians alike, such cameras couldserve as a deterrent and surveillance tool.
There have beentwo fatal car accidents in the Sunset Park area in the past month;one involved an elderly man eating while crossing the street at60th Street and Third Avenue, while in the other, acommercial van struck a 30-year-old woman at 56th Streetand Fifth Avenue.
When brought upat the precinct council meeting, Deputy Inspector Jesus R. Pintossaid that he recognized the need and welcomed further discussionwith CB7 on a letter.
In sending the letter, the community hopes to get ahead of thegame, said CB7 District Manager Jeremy Laufer. The boardpreviously threw their support behind the initiative called safespeed detectors at a previous meeting.
The cameralegislation requires approval by the City Council and wasreintroduced last week in Albany, so any installation would takeplace in a few months at the earliest, Safety Campaign DirectorLindsey Ganson told the Home Reporter. Ifpassed, a pilot program of 40 cameras would be placed at locationswith high incidence of high speed crashes.
In 2009, therewere 949 automobile speed-related crashes in Brooklyn, compared to340 from drunk driving, according to data from the GovernorsTraffic Safety Committee.