- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
The Charles County Sheriff’s Office will place a mobile speed camera at Malcolm Elementary School in Waldorf in the second week of December, making it the fourth county school where the cameras currently are authorized.
A traffic study determined that the number of people speeding through Malcolm’s school zone qualified it for a speed camera, agency spokeswoman Diane Richardson said. The camera will be at the school between Dec. 9 and 13.
The department’s three mobile speed cameras already are allowed at William B. Wade Elementary School in Waldorf, and at Maurice J. McDonough High School and Dr. James Craik Elementary School in Pomfret.
The agency suspended its speed camera program in August after it was informed by the State Highway Administration that one of the cameras had been placed 300 feet outside of the posted school zone at Daniel of St. Thomas Jenifer Elementary School on Berry Road in Waldorf. Along with suspending the program, the sheriff’s office elected to refund about $137,000 covering the 3,445 paid citations that had been issued as a result of speeding violations at Jenifer. The agency is “at the tail end” of refunding those citations, Richardson said.
The program, which began in August 2012, started back up Sept. 2 at Wade, McDonough and Craik, all of which sit on county roads. Each week, the sheriff’s office rotates the cameras and posts their location on its Facebook page, according to a news release.
Eventually the sheriff’s office plans to add Thomas Stone High School, Mattawoman Middle School and Berry Elementary School in Waldorf, and General Smallwood Middle School in Indian Head back into the rotation, but first needs to reapprove each site because they sit on state roads, Richardson said.
In addition, the department is conducting the requisite traffic studies to expand its speed camera program to other school zones, the release states.
The cameras are active between 6 a.m. and 8 p.m. Monday through Friday in the designated school zones, the exception being Wade, where the cameras are on between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m.
Drivers must be traveling 12 mph above the speed limit in order to trigger the camera. A violation carries a $40 fine but no license points, issued to the offending vehicle’s registered owner.