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Governor Hochul Takes Action to Improve Traffic Safety and Protect New Yorkers | #schoolsaftey

Governor Hochul took a series of actions to improve traffic safety across the state. This included signing legislation that enables Westchester County and the cities of Syracuse and Albany to install cameras at key intersections to enforce traffic light and school zones speeding violations, as well as improving the existing Move Over Law to protect drivers across the state.

“Keeping New Yorkers safe is my top priority, and traffic safety is no exception,” Governor Hochul said. “The legislation signed today will make streets across our state safer for drivers, cyclists, pedestrians and especially for our schoolchildren. Thank you to my partners in the legislature for their work in getting these bills to the finish line – New York is better for it.”

Governor Hochul today signed the following bills, authorizing local entities to create traffic light and school zone speeding camera programs:

  • Westchester Traffic Light Cameras (A7206B/S7026B)
  • Syracuse Traffic Light Cameras (A6686/S6631)
  • Albany School Zone Speed Cameras (A7043A/S6802A)
  • Syracuse School Zone Speed Cameras (S6632/A6687A)

Under these new laws, the County of Westchester and the cities of Albany and Syracuse are authorized to implement programs that have been proven to decrease speeding while protecting drivers, cyclists and pedestrians.

State Senator Neil Breslin said, “Speeding motorists has been a pervasive problem throughout some areas of the City of Albany. This has been a particular problem in school zones where children and families are vulnerable to getting injured or even killed. I applaud Governor Hochul for signing into law this important traffic safety measure that will help keep our streets safe.”

Assemblymember Patricia Fahy said, “Municipalities around the country have successfully implemented speed camera programs in school zones that help to protect students, reduce crashes, and improve safety. Between 2018-2022, there were 1,765 reported speeding incidents and 11,283 reported vehicular accidents in school zones in the City of Albany, with 2,109 total injuries resulting from the crashes and 11 total deaths resulting from the crashes. We know that these deterrents works — in New York City, speeding at fixed speed camera locations dropped, on average, by 73 percent. Enabling the City of Albany to implement their own version of a limited school speed zone camera program will help to reduce the number of crashes, increases awareness of the danger of speeding in school zones, and ultimately save lives. I thank Governor Kathy Hochul for signing this commonsense legislation into law.”

Assemblymember William Magnarelli said, “Encouraging drivers to obey the law is just one way of trying to protect our children and others in our community. The cameras will be used in part to support the state’s initiative to improve safety around schools.”

Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan said, “Motorists speeding through Albany’s school zones put the lives of our city’s pedestrians – especially our youngest residents – in danger. Albany’s participation in a school zone speed camera program will allow us to do everything we can to help enhance the safety of pedestrians within school zones. I commend Governor Hochul for signing this legislation into law, and am grateful to our legislative delegation of Senator Neil Breslin and Assemblymembers Patricia Fahy and John McDonald as well as the Albany Common Council for supporting this legislation.”

Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh said, “We’re working toward a Vision Zero future for Syracuse. It’s a global effort to eliminate all traffic fatalities and severe injuries, while increasing safe, healthy, equitable mobility for all. That vision includes safe passageways for children and families to school. Implementing red light and speed cameras in school zones is a critical step in that direction. I thank Governor Hochul for signing this legislation and Assemblyman William Magnarelli for his leadership in protecting our young people and for making these safety improvements possible in Syracuse.

Additionally, Governor Hochul today signed legislation (A1077/S5129), which improves the existing “move over” law requiring drivers to exercise due care to avoid vehicles stopped on the roadway, including by changing lanes. The current law has been in place since 2010 and is designed to prevent collisions with emergency vehicles. In the years since, the law has been expanded to cover hazard vehicles and other responder vehicles. However, personal vehicles stopped on the sides of highways remain a safety hazard. Nearly 300 drivers are struck and killed roadside every year, and 37 people were struck and killed outside of a disabled vehicle in New York from 2016-2020. This law expands the existing move over law to cover all vehicles stopped on the road.

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