ORANGE PARK, Fla. - Thousands of people drive U.S. Highway 17 every day as their primary route north into Jacksonville, but plans are in place to make the road safer.
Orange Park Police Chief Gary Goble says recently installed red light cameras will not only stop drivers from running red lights, but also train them over time to slow down.
Red light cameras are already up in Orange Park, and it's only a matter of time before they go live.
Even when it's not rush hour, U.S. 17 is clogged with drivers going to and from the River City. In fact, according to recent studies, about 70,000 drivers take the road daily. Goble believes the red light cameras will make a big difference.
"Not only stopping on the red lights -- it's congested and there's a lot of businesses -- but it will also slow them down," Goble said. "It's not uncommon for them to come through at 60, 70 mph."
"It's busy all day, pretty much," driver Cindy Brown said.
Drivers say they're counting on the red light cameras cutting down on accidents.
"We had a bad one last year, car flipped over," driver Anna Kaurich said.
The red light cameras will go live on April 15. Motorists will be given a 30-day trial period to get used to them before official tickets are issued by police.
Some drivers say they feel like the red light cameras are an invasion of privacy, but they've come to the realization it's a part of everyday life.
The chief says by law, red light cameras are not permitted to take pictures of the people behind the wheel. Drivers are hoping if their ticketed, everything will be taken into consideration.
"I'm kind of iffy about it because sometimes it's hard to stop when someone behind you that's speeding, you don't want to get into an accident and have them plow into you," Brown said.
"It will help. I think it will keep people honest. That's what it takes now," Kaurich said.
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