PhotoSafe

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​red means stopEverybody understands that “RED Means Stop!”  However, red light running violations are frequently observed by citizens at nearly every intersection in the city. Each year, over 12% of the total traffic tickets issued by our police officers are for red light running offenses. As a citizen in our community, we are certain you would agree that the number of red light running occurrences that officers are unable to enforce is significantly higher. The photo enforcement camera systems are an important force multiplier for the police department and they reduce the risks involved with red light running enforcement.
 
The key to PHOTOSafe Virginia Beach’s success is public knowledge of the systems and the assurance that if you run a red light, your vehicle will be photographed and you will receive a civil penalty for the violation. Details concerning Virginia Beach's automated red-light running enforcement program can be found under the related documents section.
The following information is provided for assistance:
 
To speak to a Virginia Beach Police Officer about a red light camera violation contact the PHOTOSafe program office at (757) 385-7235.
 
The PHOTOSafe office is located in the Virginia Beach Municipal Center Building 11, at 2509 Princess Anne Road, Virginia Beach, VA 23456.
 
The address to the PHOTOSafe Payment Center is: Virginia Beach Police Department, Photosafe Program, P.O. Box 742503, Cincinnati, OH 45274-2503.
 
To view the violation video evidence online or to pay a violation by credit card, visit www.violationinfo.com​ and enter the following information:  Your citation number (example: 488*********), vehicle license plate number (no dashes), and Pin# ****.
 
For additional information about Virginia Beach's PHOTOSafe Program or to arrange a PHOTOSafe presentation, contact the program coordinator at (757) 385-4673 or by email at VBPDPhotoSafe@vbgov.com.

 About PhotoSafe

RED Means Stop! Virginia Beach’s photo red light enforcement program is titled PHOTOSafe. Our
city’s goal is to simply gain compliance with traffic signals which will significantly contribute to public
safety in Virginia Beach. The camera systems are a force multiplier for the uniformed police officer and
they reduce the risks involved in the red light violation enforcement of large intersections.
The key to the program’s success is public knowledge of the systems and the assurance that if you run a
red light, your vehicle will be photographed and you will receive a civil penalty for the violation.
Therefore, the locations of monitored intersections will be highly publicized as they become active.
Information on the Virginia law governing the photo-monitoring systems to enforce traffic light signals
can be found under the Code of Virginia section 15.2-968.1.

What is the Penalty?
The penalty for a photo enforced red light running violation is $50.00 and no court costs are associated
with the offense. The violation is a civil matter. There are no driver license points assessed and there are
no insurance implications. By law, the Department of Motor Vehicles and insurance companies are
cannot be notified of the offense. This violation does not affect drivers that are on probation with the
court or with the Department of Motor Vehicles.
The operator of the vehicle is liable for the monetary penalty imposed from information obtained from the
red light camera system. The video and photographed evidence of the red light violation will be available
for review and inspection by the registered owner or driver of the vehicle. There is a legal presumption
that the registered owner, lessee, or renter of the vehicle was the person who committed the violation.
This presumption can be challenged by affidavit or testimony under oath in open court that the owner,
lessee, or renter was not the driver at the time of the violation.

How Many Intersections are Monitored?
The City of Virginia Beach is authorized to monitor a total of 43 intersections by Virginia State Code
guidelines of 1 intersection per 10,000 residents. Our City Council has approved the use of 20 camera
enforcement systems and they have been installed at 11 intersections. The process for selecting the
intersections to be monitored includes (i) the accident rate for the intersection, (ii) the rate of red light
violations occurring at the intersection, (iii) the difficulty experienced by law enforcement officers in
patrol cars or on foot in apprehending violators, (iv) the ability of law-enforcement officer to apprehend
violators safely within a reasonable distance from the violation, and (v) pedestrian safety concerns.

How Can I learn More?
The primary focus of the PHOTOSafe program is public awareness and education. The success of the
program is measured in the reduction of red light running and not by the number of vehicles caught
violating the law. Please review the information in the Related Documents section of this site. If you
have other questions or would like schedule a detailed PowerPoint presentation for your organization,
contact the PHOTOSafe Program Coordinator by phone at (757) 385-4673 or by email at
VBPDPhotoSafe@vbgov.com.

The History of PHOTOSafe and Our Program Partners
PHOTOSafe was the name given to Virginia Beach’s first red light camera program which had been
implemented in 2004. That program was terminated on July 1, 2005 because Virginia law allowing for
the use of red light cameras had expired. The Virginia legislature passed 15.2-968.1 allowing for the
return of cameras on July 1, 2007. Virginia Beach passed city ordinance ORD-3048 allowing the
enforcement of red light running with cameras on September 2, 2008 and the city contracted with
REDFLEX Traffic Systems. Cameras at the first two intersections were activated on March 13, 2009.
All of Virginia Beach’s camera enforced intersections were reviewed and approved by VDOT.
The Cities of Newport News and Chesapeake modeled their programs after the Virginia Beach program
and the PHOTOSafe program was implemented in these cities. The coordinators of the three red light
camera programs meet quarterly to discuss the programs and work closely on intersection traffic safety
issues. Links for information on the Newport News and Chesapeake PHOTOSafe programs are below.
PHOTOSafe Newport News http://www.nngov.com/police/spotlights/nnpdphotosafelaunch
PHOTOSafe Chesapeake http://www.cityofchesapeake.net/photosafe

More Sites Containing Information on this Topic
VDOT – Virginia Department of Transportation at http://www.virginiadot.org/info/photored.asp
U.S Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration at http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov
National Campaign to Stop Red Light Running at http://www.stopredlightrunning.com/
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety at http://www.iihs.org/
Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety at
http://www.saferoads.org/

 Camera Locations

​Virginia Beach Intersections Approved by VDOT for Camera Enforcement:​
Virginia Beach Blvd at Independence Blvd​(Cameras Activated March 13, 2009)
​Indian River Road at Military Highway​(Cameras Activated April 1, 2009)
​Holland Road at Rosemont Road​(Cameras Activated April 20, 2009)
​General Booth Blvd at Dam Neck Road​(Cameras Activated May 22, 2009)
​Virginia Beach Blvd at Great Neck Road​(Cameras Activated June 1, 2009)
​Princess Anne Road at Dam Neck Road​(Cameras Activated June 30, 2009)
​Independence Blvd at Bonney Road​(Cameras Activated July 31, 2009)
​Lynnhaven Parkway at International Parkway​(Cameras Activated August 31, 2009)
​North Hampton Blvd at Diamond Springs Rd​(Cameras Activated October 10, 2009)
​Baxter Road at Independence Blvd​(Cameras Activated December 8, 2009)
​Lynnhaven Pkwy at Rosemont Rd​​(Cameras Activated December 15, 2016)

Notes:
(1) The intersections are listed in the order of VDOT approval and camera activation.
(2) An engineering safety analysis was conducted at all of the above intersections in
accordance with VDOT guidelines. The analysis included a 48-hour automatic traffic recorder
directional and classification count, turn movement counts, and a concurrent 12-hour video
survey of red light violation counts. All intersections were approved for photo enforcement by
VDOT in accordance with the Code of Virginia 15.2-968.1.
(3) A 30 day automated enforcement or red light camera violation warning period is given at
each intersection when the cameras are activated. The warning period is considered part of
Virginia Beach’s public awareness program. Signs warning drivers that red lights are photo
enforced are installed within 500 feet of the intersection.
(4) Please contact the PHOTOSafe Program Coordinator if you know of a location that would
benefit from red light running photo enforcement.

 FAQs

​​
Q: How will I know which intersections have red light cameras?
A: Virginia legislation requires that localities place conspicuous signs within 500 feet of
the intersection in which a red light running camera is installed. In addition, localities
also are required to conduct a public awareness program advising the public that a
photo enforcement system is being implemented or expanded. All intersections are
listed on the PHOTOSafe information web page.

Q: Do cameras photograph every vehicle passing through an intersection?
A: No. Cameras are set so that they can only capture vehicles that enter the
intersection after the light has turned red. Vehicles that enter the intersection on
green or yellow and are still in the intersection when the light turns red are NOT
photographed. By Virginia law, the camera system can only capture violations after
the light has been red for .5 or ½ second. The delay in activation is commonly
referred to as a “grace” or “amnesty” period.

Q: Does the system enforce running right turns on red?
A: Yes. Virginia law requires all vehicles to stop on a red light signal. Right turns on
red are permitted unless otherwise posted. The camera will capture right turn
violations on vehicles that proceed without coming to a full stop. Virginia’s right turn
on red law can be viewed under the related information section on the main web page.

Q: How many negative driver points do I get and what is the fine?
A: The violation that is captured by a red light camera is a civil penalty and the
penalty assessed is $50. There are NO DMV driver demerit points and the violation is
NOT reported to DMV or the insurance companies. Further, the red light camera
offense does NOT count as a violation of probation involving DMV or the court.

Q: Who determines whether or not a violation has occurred?
A: All violations are reviewed and accepted or rejected by a sworn police officer. Any
vehicle that enters an intersection, including the crosswalks, after the light has
turned red is in violation and may be subject to a penalty. It should be noted that
Virginia Beach officers only accept approximately 40% of the violations they review.

Q: Can the officer give me a warning? Why did the City of Virginia Beach
give drivers a 30-day red light running warning period at the location where a
camera system was activated?
A: NO, officers only have the ability to accept or reject a violation. The warning period
only applied to the use of cameras at a specific intersection during the first 30 days of its
activation. The 30-day warning period was considered a part of the mandated public
awareness process for implementing or expanding the automated enforcement program.

Q: How do I review the violation?
A: You will be provided with three still photographs of your vehicle on the printed
violation notice with instructions to review the red light violation video over the internet
at www.violationinfo.com. The owner/driver can arrange for an opportunity to meet with
a PHOTOSafe program officer by calling 757-385-7235 to review the evidence and
discuss any mitigating circumstances associated with the red light running violation.
Lastly, the vehicle owner/driver can request a court date for the evidence to be heard in
the Virginia Beach General District Court. Red light camera cases are typically scheduled
on the 1st or 2nd Thursday of each month in Civil Court Room “A” at 2 pm.

Q: What happens when a funeral procession or emergency vehicle
continues through a red light at an intersection that it is photo enforced?
A: Special circumstances such as a funeral processions will be rejected by officers.
Emergency vehicle generated violations (Police, Fire, EMS) are reviewed by a police
supervisor in the interest of public safety. All violations are screened and reviewed
individually before a determination of a violation of law or policy is made.

Q: How is the timing interval determined between the red, yellow and
green traffic lights at an intersection?
A: The City of Virginia Beach Department of Traffic Engineering is responsible for
determining the traffic light timing intervals. Traffic signal timing for all monitored
intersections can be viewed by visiting the Signal Timing link under related
information section on the main web page.

Q: Does the City of Virginia Beach have a local ordinance as required by
Virginia State Code 15.2-968.1?
A: Yes, Virginia Beach Ordinance ORD-3048 amended the City Traffic Code and added
section 21-222 which authorizes the use of red-light photo monitoring systems. These
documents can be viewed in the information section of the main web page.

Q: What happens when the camera captures a Virginia Beach city vehicle?
A: City owned vehicle violations are processed in th​​e same manner as citizen violations.
The difference is that all city violations are reviewed by a police supervisor and sent to
the vehicle’s director – Office of Risk Management, Virginia Beach Public Schools, etc. A
city of Virginia Beach vehicle violation is handled by policy as a personnel matter.

Q: I received a Treasurer’s invoice about my red light violation. How come
I never received the citation?
A: The delivery of the red light violation notice is dependent upon the accuracy of the
address you have listed with DMV. You cannot receive the citation if you moved and
failed to update your address with DMV. Additional resources are used to identify the
most recent address used by individuals with delinquent citations.

Q: What if I still have additional questions?
A: Contact the PHOTOSafe Program Coordinator by phone at (757) 385-4673 or by email
at VBPDPhotosafe@vbgov.com.