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Speed cameras coming to the Sault


In an effort to curb speeding on city roads, Sault Ste. Marie is beginning the process of deploying automated speed enforcement cameras.

However, the approval from city council was not unanimous, with some members of council – including the mayor – stating speed limit enforcement is best left to the police.

The use of speed cameras was first recommended by the city’s speed management task force in 2022. This week, council was asked to endorse the use of the cameras at a preliminary cost of around $1 million.

Mayor Matthew Shoemaker said he doesn’t anticipate high returns on that investment.

“Hiring more people to process the tickets and administering the system and making sure there’s public works available when these things are ultimately vandalized, because they’ve been vandalized in every community they’re in,” Shoemaker said.

“I feel that it’s a lot of work for fairly minimal return.”

While Shoemaker said speed enforcement is best handled by the police, Coun. Lisa Vezeau-Allen said officers can’t be everywhere at once.

“It’s not like when you see somebody speeding down Queen Street at 1 in the afternoon going 70 kilometres an hour, you’re not going to call 911 to get a dispatch to give them a ticket and it’s already happened,” Vezeau-Allen said.

Shoemaker contends there are other, longer-term solutions to speeding that should be considered.

“Parking on the sides of the road, which is proven to reduce speed,” he said.

“A straight, flat road is a perfect surface for folks to speed on, so roads with curves in them or that are angled certain ways.”

But Vezeau-Allen said the deployment of speed cameras will mean police resources can be spent elsewhere.

“I think we need to embrace technology that is available, and I think this will create a safer environment in our community,” she said.

Although council ultimately voted in favour of using speed cameras, it could take up to two years before they’re deployed.

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