State adds speed camera on 295

Motorists typically slow down in enforcement zones, highway officials say

December 08, 2010|By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun

The Maryland State Highway Administration and the Maryland State Police have added a speed-camera enforcement zone on Maryland Route 295 in Anne Arundel County just south of the Beltway.

The speed camera zone, which was set up this week, covers an area where road crews are working on a widening of 295 from two lanes to three in each direction. The speed limit through the zone, which extends south to Interstate 195, is 55 mph.

The project is expected to continue through late next summer, said an SHA spokesman, Charlie Gischlar. As with Maryland's other camera enforcement zones, tickets willl not be issued unless a vehicle is traveling at least 12 mph above the speed limit. The SHA said only warnings would be issued through Dec. 29.

The zone will be the fourth active zone and the fifth to be set up since the program was instituted late last year. The other active zones are the Intercounty Connector work area on Interstate 95 between Route 198 and Route 212 in Prince George's County; the Beltway bridge replacement projects at Charles Street and at Liberty Road in Baltimore County, and the I-95 Electronic Toll Lane project in Baltimore County.

The state recently discontinued the speed camera zone on U.S. 15 at Hayward Road in Frederick County after completion of a construction project.

The speed camera program is opposed by many drivers, but state officials contend it has been effective in reducing average speeds through the work zones.

According to SHA Administrator Neil J. Pedersen, data gathered in the zones show that motorists in them slow down an average of 5 mph and that there is a 65 percent drop in the number of drivers breaking the speed limit by 10 mph or more.

Like Maryland's other camera-equipped work zones, automated enforcement on 295 is in effect around the clock and applies even when motorists do not see workers present. The SHA said iit has installed numerous signs warning drivers about the work zone. The agency said it has also deployed a portable trailer with an electric sign displaying motorists' speeds.

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