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Q1. What are automated speed enforcement (ASE) systems?

Q2. What is the goal of the work zone automated speed enforcement (ASE) program?

Q3. When did the Maryland SafeZones program begin?

Q4. How do speed cameras work?

Q5. How often are the ASE systems checked for accuracy?

Q6. Where are the speed cameras located and how are the sites selected?

Q7. How will I know if I am in a work zone with a speed camera?

Q8. If I drive past a speed camera at 2 or 3 mph over the speed limit, will I automatically get a ticket?

Q9. Can I get a citation driving through a work zone even if work is not taking place?

Q10. How long does it take to get a citation in the mail?

Q11. Is there a warning period before citations are issued?

Q12. What is the fine? Are points assessed against my driver's license?

Q13. How do I pay the fine?

Q14. What if I don't pay the fine?

Q15. Are the citations reviewed before they are mailed out?

Q16. How are revenues from the fines used?

Q17. What if I wasn't driving my car at the time of the violation? Am I still responsible for paying the fine?

Q18. Can I appeal a speed camera citation?

Q19. Are speed cameras an invasion of privacy?

Q20. What happens if my vehicle's registration is suspended? How do I obtain a flag release?

Q21. What happens if my citation has been forwarded to Maryland Central Collection Unit (CCU)?


Q1: What are automated speed enforcement (ASE) systems?

A: An automated speed enforcement (ASE) system is an enforcement technique with one or more motor vehicle sensors producing recorded images of motor vehicles traveling at speeds above a defined threshold. Images captured by ASE systems are processed and reviewed in an office environment. All citations are reviewed and certified by a police officer. Violation notices are then mailed to the registered owner of the violating vehicle. Often, ASE systems are referred to as speed cameras.

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Q2: What is the goal of the work zone automated speed enforcement (ASE) program?

A: The goals of the program, also known as the Maryland SafeZones program, are to encourage a change in driver behavior and to increase driver awareness of the impacts of speed-related crashes in work zones. Driving too fast for conditions is one of the most prevalent factors contributing to traffic crashes. Nearly one-third of all fatal crashes are speeding-related. [NHTSA, 2007]

Lane restrictions and other hazards in a work zone make it imperative for drivers to stay alert and obey the posted speed limit. Driving too fast for conditions reduces a driver's ability to steer safely around curves or objects in the roadway, extends the distance necessary to stop a vehicle, and increases the distance a vehicle travels while a driver reacts to a dangerous situation.

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Q3: When did the Maryland SafeZones program begin?

A: Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration (MDOT SHA), Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) and Maryland State Police (MSP) began the pilot automated speed enforcement program, Maryland SafeZones, on October 1, 2009, coinciding with the date Maryland law allowed speed cameras in work zones. Refer to Transportation Article § 21-810 for additional details on the law.

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Q4: How do speed cameras work?

A: The ASE system measures the speed of each passing vehicle. A series of photographs are recorded to document vehicles traveling at or above a determined speed threshold. The date, time, and location of the violation, as well as the speed and license plate of the violator's vehicle are recorded. Following the proper identification of the registered owner of the vehicle using the license plate number, the registered owner is mailed a citation, which includes the violation photos and the vehicle speed.