Macon-Bibb County began installing cameras and sensors in school zones last year to help catch and ticket speeding drivers.
The first three cameras were installed at Ballard-Hudson Middle, Weaver Middle and Westside High School last April. They have been running since then, though Bibb County did waive some tickets from last fall since many people were not aware of the cameras or their tickets.
The newest three cameras were installed at the Northeast High/Appling Middle school campus, the Rutland Middle/High school campus and Southwest High School throughout year.
These speed detectors have also been running since installation, but with a similar grace period to the initial cameras.
Macon-Bibb County officials said they plan to install the cameras at all public schools, and that there is also some interest from private schools. But with the locations selected, when and how do the cameras enforce speeding?
School zones have two speed limits, a regular one enforced during most of the day and a reduced one that is enforced when children arrive and depart from school. Drivers are alerted to reduced speed by flashing school zone lights.
Cameras enforce both the reduced speed limit during arrival and dismissal and the regular speed limit throughout the day, according to a Macon-Bibb County spokesperson. Even if the yellow lights on the school zone signs are not flashing, you can be ticketed for driving 10 mph or more over the posted speed limit.
Reduced speeds are enforced at different times for different grade levels.
High school is in session from 7:30 am to 2:35 pm, so cameras check speeds from 6:30 am to 3:35 pm, with a reduced speed limit in effect around those arrival and dismissal times. Middle school speeds are enforced from 8:05 am to 5:05 pm
This means for zones that have a middle and high school right near each other, like the camera installed at Northeast and Appling or the one on Rutland’s campus, the enforcement time is longer. The cameras are active from 6:30 am to 5:05 pm
Here are the enforcement times for the current cameras:
- Northeast/Appling and Rutland: 6:30 am to 5:05 pm
- Westside and Southwest: 6:30 am to 3:35 pm
- Weavers: 8:05 am to 5:05 pm
- Ballard-Hudson/Ingram Pye: 7:20 am to 5:05 pm