Mar 8, 2024 | PC Community, PC Schools, PC Sports

From: Hawaii State Senate

On Tuesday, March 5, Senate Bill 2443 (SB 2443) and Senate Bill 2308
(SB2308), two measures that seek to protect pedestrians in school zones by addressing speeding
motorists, passed Third Reading in the Senate. Both bills were introduced by Senator Brandon
J.C. Elefante (District 16, ʻAiea, ʻAiea Heights, Hālawa, Pearlridge, Newtown, Royal Summit,
Waimalu, Waiau, Momilani, Pacific Palisades, and Pearl City) in response to growing concerns
from his community that excessive speeding in school zones has gotten out of hand.

“I would like to thank Rep. Ichiyama for her perseverance and dedication to making this
legislation come to fruition,” said Senator Elefante. “These measures give us another tool to keep
our keiki safer and make our roads and neighborhoods increasingly more pedestrian friendly. It
is incumbent upon us to ensure that speed limits are adhered to and enforced.”

“Highway safety is not just engineering, you need education and enforcement to encourage
everyone to do their part in making our system safer,” said Hawaiʻi Department of
Transportation Director Ed Sniffen. “A well-thought out automated speed enforcement system
could improve safety by supporting fair enforcement that emphasizes reduction in dangerous
behaviors. We’ve already seen crashes decrease by twenty percent at our Red-Light Safety
Camera locations and we appreciate Senator Elefante’s leadership in seeking to apply a similar
program to address speeding.”

SB 2443 would establish the Automated Speed Enforcement Systems Program for up to ten
school zones. Automated speed enforcement programs can be powerful tools to reduce motor
vehicle crashes and fatalities, using cameras, vehicle sensors, and speed measuring devices to
identify and record vehicles going above the speed limit.

“The safety of all users on the road is a major priority for HDOT,” said Sniffen. “I sincerely
thank Senator Elefante and the other legislators that introduced SB2308 to create a stronger
deterrent for drivers speeding in our school zones. We know that vehicle speed is the major
factor in survivability for those involved in crashes and we support this measure to get people to
think twice about how they drive especially when there are keiki around.”

SB 2308 would establish additional fines and penalties for convictions of speeding in a school

The Senate Committee on Transportation and Culture and the Arts has made reducing of traffic
fatalities and increasing safety for pedestrians a priority of the Committee. According to the
Department of Transportation, speeding has always been one of the top contributing factors in
motor vehicle fatalities for the past decade, and in 2023, speeding was a major contributing
factor in half of the motor vehicle fatalities in Hawaiʻi.

“For too long, we have come to accept fatalities on our roads as an inevitable consequence of
living in Hawaiʻi, but it doesn’t have to be this way,” said Senator Chris Lee (District 25, Kailua,
Waimānalo, Hawaiʻi Kai), Chair of the Senate Committee on Transportation and Culture and the
Arts. “Communities around the world have taken steps that have successfully reduced traffic
fatalities to zero in some places, and reducing speeding in areas with keiki and kūpuna is a
proven way to save lives.”

Senate Bill 2443 and Senate Bill 2308 now move to the Hawaiʻi House of Representatives for

Photo by Barry Villamil |