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New PennDOT speed enforcement leading to tens of thousands more tickets on I-79

WASHINGTON COUNTY, Pa. — PennDOT officials said they’ve issued more than 20,000 citations on one stretch of I-79 near the southern beltway project thanks to new technology that can catch more than one driver going too fast.

With a major construction project along the highway in Washington County, there are as many as 100 workers at a time near traffic. The automated work zone enforcement is a portable system inside a vehicle parked along the interstate. If you’re going more than 11 miles per hour over the speed limit, it will snap your picture along with any cars speeding next to you as well.

“It used two different types of radar technology to compute the speed of the vehicle, take a picture of the front and back of the car. It can do multiple at once as they are passing through,” said Jason Zang, assistant district executive for PennDOT’s district 11. Zang called it “pretty amazing technology.”

Julia Bavaro drives that stretch of I-79 in her work vehicle and was surprised to hear from her boss that she received a citation in the mail. Bavaro is now warning people on social media to slow down.

“I’ve only been doing 48 at most. People flying by doing 60-65. It’s insane,” she said.

“There is one goal to improve safety in our work zones, slow people down and improve safety,” Zang said.

PennDOT said they’ve issued 220,000 citations across the state over the last year.