The PA Turnpike is cracking down on drivers who speed through work zones starting next week. It will make more frequent use of vehicle-mounted cameras to detect speeders, then send them a fine in the mail.

The Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement program has finished its 60 day trial period. Now, the AWZSE is permanent. Anyone driving eleven miles per hour over the posted limit could see a fine in the mail.

“While there can be fines assessed, the AWZSE program’s goal is not to generate revenue,” explained PA Turnpike CEO Mark Compton. “The goal is to build awareness and most importantly, to change unsafe driving behaviors. The program serves as a roadway reminder that safety is literally in each driver’s hands when they are behind the wheel.”

First offenses will result in a warning letter. Violators will have to pay $75 for a second offense, and $150 for each next ticket.

As the fines are civil penalties, these tickets will not add points to the violator’s drivers license.

PA Turnpike worker victims.
Cones are lined up with plaques, each bearing a name of a worker killed on the job. May 2019.

The state government passed Act 86 in 2018 to establish the AWZSE. Supporters cited recent statistics showing the dangers workers face on the roads.

Almost half of the 1,804 work zone crashes in 2018 resulted in a fatality or injury, according to the PTC. 23 people lost their lives.

And since 1970, 89 PennDOT workers have died while doing their job. The PTC has lost 45 workers since 1945.

“Through the Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement program, we are urging motorists to slow down and pay attention while driving, especially through work zones where roadway conditions can change on a daily basis,” said acting PennDOT Secretary Yassmin Gramian. “Ultimately, this program is not about issuing violations, it’s about saving lives.”

All active work zones will have signs alerting drivers to slow down. The PA Turnpike Commission also lists each location with a camera on its website here.