Automated Speed Enforcement
What is Automated Speed Enforcement?
Automated speed enforcement is a system that uses a camera and speed measurement device to enforce speed limits in identified areas. If a vehicle exceeds the posted speed limit in an automated speed enforcement area, the automated speed enforcement system captures an image which is reviewed by a provincial offences officer. An image of the offence, license plate and ticket with an associated fine will be mailed within the next 30 days.
Why are we implementing automated speed enforcement in York Region?
At the November 5, 2020 meeting of York Regional Council, it was confirmed that automated speed enforcement is now starting in select school areas.
More than half of fatal collisions on Regional roads are related to speeding. Automated Speed Enforcement is a new tool to improve road safety and change driver behaviour.
In York Region, automated speed enforcement is a two-year pilot program to determine the capacity of provincial courts to process the infractions, as well as a trial for the technology being used.
How automated speed enforcement works
The automated speed enforcement system is comprised of three main parts:
- A speed measurement component.
- A data processing/storage component.
- An image capture component that includes a data box with the posted speed limit, speed of vehicle, location, time of day and other information.
If a vehicle exceeds the posted speed limit in an automated speed enforcement area, the automated speed enforcement system captures an image that is stored and reviewed by a provincial offences officer. The ticket, which contains a digitized copy of the image and an enlargement of the license plate, is mailed to the registered plate holder within 30 days of the offence, outlining next steps and the cost of the associated fine. Automated speed enforcement associated tickets will not result in demerit points.
Tickets and fines FAQs
What is the maximum number of tickets someone can receive?
There is no maximum number of tickets someone can receive. A ticket will be issued to the registered plate owner each time their vehicle exceeds the speed limit when a municipal speed camera is in use. The best way to avoid a ticket is to obey the posted speed limits. They are the law, not a guideline.
How are automated speed enforcement tickets processed?
After the automated speed enforcement system captures an image of a vehicle exceeding the speed limit, the image is sent to a processing centre to be reviewed by a provincial offences officer. The ticket, which contains a digitized copy of the image and an enlargement of the license plate image, is mailed to the registered plate owner. On conviction, the penalty is a fine, no demerit points are applied.
What are the fines associated with an automated speed enforcement ticket?
Tickets issued for speeding when detected through automated speed enforcement clearly indicate the set fine, which is determined by the Chief Judge of the Ontario Court of Justice and is specific to the rate of speed over the speed limit the vehicle was travelling at the time the image was taken. The total payable amount indicated on the ticket includes the set fine, court costs and victim fine surcharge. More information can be found at the Ontario Court of Justice page.
How do I pay an automated speed enforcement fine?
In-person payments can be made by visiting either of York Region's two courthouses or any Ontario Provincial Offences Court.
Payment by mail:
Pay by mail can be made using Visa or MasterCard, money order or cheque.
To pay by credit card, please fill out the Pre-Authorized Payment Form and return by mail or fax to the appropriate court location.
If the location code on your ticket is 4960, mail your ticket and payment to the Newmarket court location, If the location code is 4961, mail your ticket and payment to the Richmond Hill court location.
For more information and complete mailing addresses, visit york.ca/courts
Will a ticket affect my insurance?
While tickets do not result in demerit points, a speeding ticket has the potential to affect your insurance. This is a matter to address with your insurance company.
Will automated speed enforcement tickets affect driver/owner records such a demerit points?
No. Since the ticket is issued to the registered plate holder and not the driver, no demerit points can be applied.
How will privacy for the information collected by the automated speed enforcement system be maintained?
The data collected by the automated speed enforcement system is encrypted and stored on a secure device, then transported to a processing centre in a locked container. Only a provincial offences officer has the key to a locked container and only the automated speed enforcement image processing software can use the encrypted data. Once the data has been downloaded, all recorded data on the storage unit is erased.
Who is issued the ticket?
The ticket is issued to the registered plate holder of the vehicle, even if they were not the one driving. An offence notice is mailed within 30 days of the violation.
If someone receives a ticket, what is the process? What are their options?
If someone receives a ticket, the options will be included in more detail on the ticket. However, there are three basic options:
- Pay the fine according to the instructions on the ticket.
- Request to attend court to plead not guilty and have a trial.
- Request to attend court to plead guilty and request a longer time to pay.
It is important to note that if one of the options is not exercised within 15 days of receiving the notice, it will be deemed that the registered plate holder does not wish to dispute the charge and a justice may enter a conviction.
What happens with a conviction?
Upon conviction, additional costs will be added to the total payable indicated on the ticket. If the fine goes into default an additional administrative fee will be added and the information may be reported to a collection agency. This may affect the person’s ability to renew their vehicle permit or their permit could be refused until the ticket and all additional charges are paid.
How will Ontario’s court system handle the new charges associated with automated speed enforcement?
All automated speed enforcement speeding tickets will be processed through the Provincial Offences Court, the same as any other speeding or traffic-related offence.
Why does the registered plate holder receive the ticket instead of the person who was driving when the ticket was issued?
The technology does not capture images of the driver, only the license plate. Given the restrictions of the image capture technology, a ticket can only be issued to the registered plate holder, not the person responsible for the infraction.
If the ticket goes to the registered plate holder, what about people who lease or rent cars?
Most rental agreements include a clause that enables rental agencies to pass any fines incurred to the driver.
Can an emergency vehicle receive a ticket?
Yes. Since the automated speed enforcement system is automated, it is triggered by any motor vehicle exceeding the speed limit in a community safety zone.
Is there a speed threshold before receiving a ticket?
Speed limits are the law. Drivers that obey the law will not receive a ticket.
Automated speed enforcement site locations map
Where is automated speed enforcement being implemented in York Region?
York Region has prioritized nine locations including 17 school areas in 2023. There will be three ASE mobile cameras and they will be rotated every three months among the locations shown on the map.
View larger image (PDF print version)
Accessible formats or communication supports are available upon request.
Camera rotation schedule
|Richmond Hill||Bayview Avenue||February||2023|
|Richmond Hill||Major Mackenzie Drive East||September||2023|
|Vaughan||Major Mackenzie Drive West||September||2023|
Note: Automated Speed Enforcement (ASE) warning signs will be in place 90 days in advance of camera activation and will be replaced with regulatory camera in use signs when activated. The ASE schedule is approximate.
Statistics on collisions
- There were 140 collisions involving pedestrians in York Region
- 94 per cent of collisions involving pedestrians resulted in injuries or fatalities
- 86 per cent of collisions involving cyclists resulted in injuries or fatalities
- Pedestrians or cyclists were involved in 3.5% of all collisions
Statistics on traffic offences
- Over the past two years, approximately 55% of fatal collisions were related to speeding
- Over the past seven years, speeding is the top traffic violation in the Region
- Approximately 40,000 speeding charges were issued annually, representing more than 60% of all traffic offences
Source: York Regional Police
Statistics with use of Automated Speed Enforcement camera
When ASE camera is present:
Operating speeds reduced by approximately 10km/hr
Speed limit compliance increased by approximately 25%
Where can automated speed enforcement be implemented?
Under the Highway Traffic Act, automated speed enforcement can only be authorized for use in school areas and community safety zones.
What is a community safety zone?
A community safety zone is an area designated through a by-law passed by municipal council to identify and advise motorists they are within a zone where public safety is of special concern including school areas. Certain Highway Traffic Act fines (including speeding) are doubled in community safety zones.
Links to Council reports and memorandums in relation to the development of York Region’s ASE program and the results of the ASE pilot program.
- June 2019 – Automated Speed Enforcement Update – Council Memo
- October 2019 – Automated Speed Enforcement – Council Report
- January 2020 – Automated Speed Enforcement Update – Council Report
- June 2020 – Automated Speed Enforcement Update – Council Memo
- November 2020 – Automated Speed Enforcement Update – Council Memo
- November 2021 – Automated Speed Enforcement Pilot Program Update – Council Memo
- June 2022 – Automated Speed Enforcement and Administrative Penalty System – Council Report
Why is automated speed enforcement being implemented in York Region?
The two-year automated speed enforcement pilot is to determine the capacity of provincial courts to process the infractions, as well as a trial for the technology being used.
Speeding around schools puts the lives of the most vulnerable at unnecessary risk. The goal of automated speed enforcement is to increase safety in school areas and community safety zones while also changing driver behavior.
How will automated speed enforcement reduce road-related injuries and deaths?
Using technology that supports road safety can help alter driver behavior and enforce speed limits in school areas. Automated speed enforcement is one approach to protecting children and other vulnerable road users.
How do we know automated speed enforcement will be effective?
Several other cities across North America have utilized automated speed enforcement as a tool with great success. The use of automated speed enforcement has resulted in better speed compliance, fewer collisions and less severity in the collisions that do occur.
- In 2016, Quebec reported average speeds reduced by 13.3 km/h and collisions reduced by 15 to 42% at automated speed enforcement sites
- Saskatchewan saw an overall reduction of speed in school areas. The average speed fell by 17% and speed related casualty collisions fell by 63%, which resulted in 51% fewer injuries. 56% of Saskatchewan residents wanted the automated speed enforcement program to continue, with 93% of them wanting the program to expand
- New York City saw speeding reduced by 63% and pedestrian injuries reduced by 23% in automated speed enforcement areas
How will drivers know that a location is equipped with automated speed enforcement?
Automated speed enforcement is about safety and transparency. Clear signage will be posted in each school area indicating it will be an automated speed enforcement area. Municipal speed camera coming soon signs will be installed 90 days in advance of cameras being installed to let motorists know an automated speed enforcement system will be installed. Once the cameras are installed, the sign will be replaced to notify drivers municipal speed cameras are in use.
How accurate is the automated speed enforcement system at detecting speed?
Automated speed enforcement is just as accurate at detecting speed as traditional speed measurement devices used by police.
Does the automated speed enforcement system capture and store video footage as well as images?
No. This is not a video-based system. Only a still image of the motor vehicle and license plate is captured.