AAA: DC's automated traffic enforcement cameras falling short of revenue expectations

These days, drivers can get a ticket from a camera in many spots around D.C., but AAA Mid-Atlantic says revenue from camera tickets around the District is not living up to its million-dollar expectations. 

The automated traffic enforcement cameras which rolled out last winter include portable stop sign cameras, intersection speed cameras, over-sized vehicle cameras and pedestrian right-of-way cameras. In the planning stage, officials predicted they would bring in at least $30 million in additional traffic fines. But to date, the cameras have only recorded 10,238 infractions, generating $719,079 in camera ticket revenue. 

AAA Mid-Atlantic says they obtained the details on the camera ticket revenue via a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. It shows nearly 7,000 stop sign camera tickets have been issued, but only 20 pedestrian safety violations in school zones were captured. And the gridlock cameras that ticket motorists for "blocking the box" have yet to issue a single ticket or capture a violation, AAA says.

Implementing the new photo enforcement cameras has already cost the District almost $40 million in projected revenue, and has caused the city's budget czar to lower revenue projections by nearly $80 million. And, the delays and glitches have prompted D.C. police to seek an outside auditor to review what went wrong in its entire automated traffic enforcement program.

According to AAA Mid-Atlantic, here is the breakdown of the revenue so far:

Automated Traffic Enforcement

(ATE) Camera Systems

FY 2014

FY 2015 (Through Feb. 28, 2015)





Stop Sign Camera





Oversized Vehicle Camera





Pedestrian Right of Way Camera





Gridlock Camera





AAA Mid-Atlantic was unable to ascertain the number of intersection speed camera tickets issued last year. The DMV explained it does not maintain those records. Designed to penalize speeders, it is likely those tickets are tallied as such.
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