Mayor Breed's Legislation to Streamline Deployment of Automated Speed Enforcement Cameras Approved by Board of Supervisors

Legislation to expedite the deployment of new speed cameras recently approved under state law change which Mayor Breed sponsored that allows certain cities to pilot critical safety tool to prevent traffic injuries and deaths
April 02, 2024

San Francisco, CA – Today, the Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to approve legislation authored by Mayor London N. Breed that would streamline the deployment of new automated speed enforcement cameras in San Francisco. This new speed safety enforcement tool is now available thanks to a state law change made in 2023, which Mayor Breed also sponsored.  

Last week, the Mayor set out her Transportation Vision and joined City leaders to mark the 10-year anniversary of the City’s Vision Zero plan and announce next steps in street safety efforts, including directing the SFMTA to streamline immediate Vision Zero actions which include implementation of speed safety cameras.  

In 2023, the state legislature passed Assembly Bill 645, legislation sponsored by Mayor Breed that allows San Francisco, along with five other cities, to implement a five-year speed safety camera pilot. This law enables the SFMTA to install 33 speed safety cameras on San Francisco streets with a history of speeding and severe or fatal crashes, or the street is located in a school zone.  

Under the approved legislation, the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Authority (SFMTA) will procure design, construction, operation, maintenance, and related services through one, best-value selected contractor for the implementation of Automated Speed Enforcement (ASE) Cameras. This will shave a year off of the process and allow the cameras to be put into use by 2025. 

“Creating safer streets starts with addressing speed, which is the largest cause of injury and death in traffic collisions,” said Mayor London Breed. “We fought for years to give our city this tool, and now that we have it, we are doing everything we can to get these cameras out on our streets as quickly as possible. This is just one tool to make our streets safer, but it’s a critical one that will save lives.” 

“Speed is one of the top factors in severe and fatal car crashes,” said City Attorney David Chiu. “In over 200 cities in America, automated speed enforcement has been proven to slow drivers down and save lives. In 2017, I introduced the first automated speed enforcement bill in the Assembly. I never thought it would take seven years to get done, but I am thrilled to finally see it become reality in San Francisco. Thank you to all of the advocates and policymakers for fighting for this life-saving technology.”  

“Ten years after the City set the goal of getting to zero traffic fatalities, we still see far too many traffic fatalities and severe injuries on our streets.  San Francisco must use every tool we can to curb reckless driving and protect our most vulnerable road users, including pedestrians and cyclists,” said San Francisco County Transportation Authority Chair and District 8 Supervisor Rafael Mandelman. “The Transportation Authority strongly supports this pilot and has provided $150,000 in Prop L funds for speed camera education and outreach. These cameras will help slow some of our most dangerous corridors and get us closer to achieving our still-too-elusive Vision Zero goal.” 

Speed Camera Deployment 

SFMTA’s installation plan for the ASE program ensures the cameras will be geographically distributed along San Francisco’s High Injury Network, with at least two cameras in each Supervisor’s district and at many key freeway connecting points in the City. 

The cameras will also be a critical tool to help enforce lower speeds outside of eight school sites, 12 parks, 11 social service sites including sites for seniors and people with disabilities, and 12 neighborhood commercial districts. The entire list of recommended camera locations can be found on the SFMTA’s Speed Safety Camera program page.

Currently, other critical aspects of the ASE program are being worked through, including finalization of locations for cameras, selecting a camera vendor which is underway, completing the citation process, building a community education and awareness campaign and installation of the cameras. 

Automated Speed Enforcement cameras are expected to launch in early 2025. 

“Speed safety cameras have been a proven tool in reducing speeds around the world and in many parts of this country,” said Jeffrey Tumlin, SFMTA Director of Transportation. “We have been long prepared for this technology in San Francisco and have been working tirelessly to build this new program since the bill was signed into law. Our staff has gathered data on speeding in the City, selected camera locations and met with community-based organizations to expedite the rollout.”  

Next Steps on Vision Zero  

In addition to the immediate Vision Zero safety improvements like deploying speed cameras, the Mayor has directed SFMTA and SFDPH to work together with other City departments, community advocates and stakeholders over the next six months to review existing Vision Zero policy and programs and propose recommendations both continuing and reimagining San Francisco’s safety commitments beyond 2024. 

Vision Zero is one component to the City’s broader transportation work and street safety implementations. The Mayor has also laid out her Transportation Vision, where she committed to nine strategies to meet her goals, including ensuring transportation benefits are distributed equally, ensuring transportation supports economic recovery, and building a network of safe routes for people of all ages and abilities to walk, bike, and use mobility devices.