There's not yet any timeframe as to when the cameras would be set up.

Photo radar is nothing if not divisive, but that hasn't stopped the Ontario government from announcing new legislation to bring back the technology, which the province last saw in 1995.

Photo radar involves using cameras installed on highways or at intersections to take pictures of speeding vehicles, among other violations. The licence plate is photographed, and the plate's owner is sent a ticket by mail.

While photo radar used in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) decades ago was focused on highways, the new legislation is meant for municipalities, in order to help improve safety in school zones and reduced-speed limit zones, according to the Toronto Star.

The GTA is certainly not the only place in Canada that uses, or is planning to use, photo radar.

The initial request for photo radar was made by Toronto Mayor John Tory, and Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne brought forth the legislation.

"Our intent is to give municipalities more tools to help keep people safe on our roads," said Wynne to the Toronto Star. "We are doing this ... because we know it will make it safer for kids ... and because municipalities have asked us to work with them."

Beyond the photo radar, the new rules will introduce more reduced-speed limit zones in hopes of cutting down on vehicle collisions with pedestrians and cyclists.

There's not yet any time-frame as to when the cameras would be set up, but Tory tells the Toronto Star "I would certainly want to (move) very quickly on this," and possibly "early in the New Year."

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The GTA is certainly not the only place in Canada that uses, or is planning to use, photo radar. Motor1 Canada editor Kanishka Sonnadara learned that lesson recently during a trip just outside of Montreal. He broke the 100 kilometres per hour speed limit on the highway while passing a slower driver, and about a month later, a thick stack of documents showed up at his residence. He was caught by a camera, and was being fined.

Edmonton, Alberta meanwhile, has been using photo radar since 1993. Proponents say this technology helps police officers focus on more pressing work. A site dedicated to be against the practice (NoPhotoRadar.ca) says the technology can't be trusted and is nothing more than a cash grab, while other critics imply that photo radar will soon exapnd outside Ontario school zones.

Photo: Happyshooter / Joe M on Flickr

Source: Toronto Star

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