City of Greater Sudbury says it’s not backing down as people destroy speed cameras

The City of Greater Sudbury says speed cameras that have been damaged from vandalism will continue to be repaired.On March 22, the city installed six portable speed cameras in different areas of Greater Sudbury that automatically ticket drivers going beyond the speed limit.Two of the cameras — on Main Street in Val Caron and on Falconbridge Road — have been severely vandalized since they were installed.Since the city installed the cameras, they’ve inspired strong reactions from residents.Sudbury resident Jay Preseau created a Facebook Group called Sudbury Speed Cameras that now has more than 1,300 members.”I did it just as a joke, ” Preseau said. “I’m glad that people are getting enjoyment out of the group because everyone needs a bit more fun in their lives.”The City of Greater Sudbury installed six portable speed cameras on different streets where speeding was identified as a problem. (Yvon Theriault/Radio-Canada)The group includes jokes and memes about the cameras and especially the two that have been especially targeted.Preseau said there’s a lot of frustration about the cameras.”Speeding is an issue for sure, but with money being as tight as it is these days, like getting a $40 or $50 ticket for doing five over, a lot of people are frustrated because that money can be used for other important things,” he said.Facebook group member Gilles Bisier said the city should be more transparent about the threshold for the cameras.”Are they going to start ticketing at five, four, three over? Nobody knows,” he said.Bisier said he believes the cameras are a cash grab.Damage ‘more persistent’ than anticipated”While we anticipated the vandalism of the cameras there, it is more persistent than I was anticipating,” said Joe Rocca, the city’s director of linear infrastructure services.”But we’re going to keep going at it.”Rocca said the city’s lease agreement with the camera vendor takes repairs into account.Joe Rocca is the City of Greater Sudbury’s director of linear infrastructure. (Aya Dufour/CBC)The camera on Falconbridge Road was removed from its spot, between Donnelly Drive and Church Street, with a tow strap.In an email to CBC News, Greater Sudbury Police spokesperson Kaitlyn Dunn said police are investigating the incident.Rocca said most of the camera’s pieces were located on a nearby street and it is being rebuilt.”It is being repaired, and just like any of them, we’re going to keep getting them fixed and keep rolling out with this program,” he said.Although the city does not yet have data on the number of speeding tickets issued, Rocca said they are already working at deterring drivers from speeding.Before the camera was installed on Falconbridge Road, he said, around 88 per cent of drivers were travelling above the speed limit on that stretch of road.After the camera was installed, he said, compliance with the speed limit jumped to 70 per cent.Rocca added that 25 per cent of drivers on that roadway were travelling 15 km/h over the speed limit before the camera was installed. Now, he said, it’s just over four per cent of drivers travelling at that speed.As for concerns the cameras are a cash grab, Rocca said people who don’t speed will have nothing to worry about.”Speed limits aren’t optional. They’re not discretionary. Those are black and white.”

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