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Norton speed camera busts 9,352 drivers in two months, generating up to $1.1 million

Posted: 3:15 PM, Nov 06, 2018
Updated: 2018-11-06 21:04:46Z
Norton speed cameras busted how many drivers?!?
Norton speed cameras busted how many drivers?!?

A speed camera, used by Norton police in the I-76 construction zone, could generate $1.1 million for the city after more than 9,000 civil violations were mailed to drivers.

According to statistics released by the city, 9,352 civil speed violations were issued between Sept. 10, 2018 and Oct. 31, 2018. The fine per violation is $200.

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Norton keeps 60 percent of the revenue collected. The rest goes to Blue Line Solutions which makes the camera, known as DragonCam.

In the first seven weeks, the violations added up to $1,870,400, meaning Norton is in line to receive up to $1,122,240.

Civil speed enforcement violations were issued for vehicles traveling 65 mph, which is 10 mph higher than the posted speed limit.

The city said 2,399 people were going at least 70 mph in the construction zone. The top speed recorded was at 107 mph.

The speed camera has been used nearly every day — usually in three-hour increments — by various police officers.

They perch themselves on different bridges and point the camera towards cars heading along a six-mile stretch of the construction zone.

Norton Police Chief John Dalessandro said Norton wanted to use the camera out of safety and speeding concerns.

When construction began in 2016, there were 83 accidents. That number jumped to 147 in 2017. In the first six months of 2018, 84 crashes were reported in the same section of highway.

Last month, the chief said the camera seemed to be making a difference.

"After speaking with dispatch, we've seen a little bit of a decrease in crashes on 76."

In a press release dated November 5, the city said it has seen a 46 percent decrease in crashes along the stretch of I-76.

The police department temporarily suspended using DragonCam effective November 5. City officials previously told News 5, the camera would not be used over the winter months when construction is on hold.

During that time, officers will resume radar enforcement in marked patrol units on the highway.

The city plans to resume using DragonCam in the spring, but it will go away for good when the construction project is finished, possibly by the end of 2019, the chief said.

Some drivers interviewed last month said the enforcement seemed like a cash grab for Norton rather than a safety issue.

"It seems a little excessive," said Ben Lynch. "I got a ticket on 76 the other day from an actual officer, so they've got officers there and cameras going. It seems like a lot."

"If it's $200 a ticket, it's money," said Dave Huffman. "If it was something reasonable, that would be different."