Road configurations in smaller Pennsylvania towns are dense and don’t always allow for effective speed enforcement systems. But local officers are limited. Unlike every other state in the country, Pennsylvania does not permit municipal police to use radar. For several decades, the use of radar has been limited to state troopers.
Proposed laws to bring local police, well, up to speed have been unsuccessful for years.
But that could change on Sunday.
Rep. Steven Santarsiero, D-Bucks, and Rep. Paul Clymer, R-Bucks, have led a bipartisan move to pass HB 1475, which would permit local police to use radar.
On Friday, Santarsiero said he’s never understood why anyone would oppose such a measure.
“It would have a considerable impact on...traffic safety in our towns and cities,” he said.
Under the bill, “Electronic devices such as radio-microwave devices [commonly referred to as electronic speed meters or RADAR] or infrared laser light devices [commonly referred to as LIDAR] may be used...upon completion of a training course approved by the Pennsylvania State Police and the Municipal Police Officers' Education and Training Commission, by full-time police officers employed by the full-service police department of a political subdivision or regional police department...”
Santarsiero said he filed the bill as an amendment to a distracted driving bill scheduled for second consideration, which could allow for a vote on HB 1475 on Sunday.
“At the very least I think it will move it forward as an issue,” he said. “This deals with the same topic...traffic safety.”