Cyprus speed cameras back after 13 years

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Thirteen years after dismantling its national traffic camera network due to technical and legal hiccups, Cyprus signed a €34 mln deal on Monday for cameras to be gradually operational from next June.

Transport Minister Yiannis Karousos signed the agreement on behalf of the government with US-based Conduent State and Local Solutions Inc, in the presence of Justice Minister Emily Yiolitis.

The project costing €34 mln in three phases will see the company install 90 fixed cameras at 30 locations, to monitor red light and stop sign violations, as well as for speeding with another 20 mobile units to be deployed by the police during targeted campaigns or in rural areas.

Cameras will be used to detect traffic violations, from speeding and running a red light, to talking on a phone whilst driving and not wearing a seatbelt.

The project is to be conducted in three phases, a pilot phase – within six months from now – phase one and phase two.

The Pilot Phase, which is expected to be completed within 6 months of signing the contract, includes the operation of four (4) mobile cameras and the installation and operation of four (4) fixed cameras in one (1) location.

A centre for collection and processing of violations will be established for handling notifications to be sent to the offenders. This phase will operate as a pilot for 3 months.

Phase One is to be completed within 6 months from the completion of the pilot phase, that would be in 15 months from today.

It will include the operation of another 16 mobile cameras and installation and operation of another 20 fixed cameras in another six locations.

Phase two, to be completed within one year after phase one, includes the installation of an additional 66 fixed cameras (reaching 90 in total) at a further 23 locations.

The processing centre will also reach its full operational capacity to adequately provide the required service.

Transport Minister Yiannis Karousos said that he was delighted with the outcome.

“Traffic camera systems have been proven to significantly reduce road accidents. This project aims at enhancing road safety and protecting human life.

“The government has intensified its efforts to increase road safety and reduce road accidents through the implementation of new systems.

“There is no doubt that the traffic camera system to be installed in Cyprus will reduce road accidents.”

Karousos said that during the period when Cyprus had speed cameras in 12 locations, road accidents were reduced by 53.57%.

As an EU member, Cyprus has adopted the European target of 50% reduction in road fatalities and 50% reduction in serious injuries within the decade 2021-2030.

Justice Minister Emily Yiolitis said: “Traffic camera systems have been the most powerful tool used by countries, to successfully reduce traffic accidents.”

She said there is “indisputable evidence” of the enormous importance and value of speed management on the road network using such systems.

Cyprus has one of the worst road accident death rates per population in Europe.