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Bend Police and Community Meet for Open House to Discuss Traffic Safety and Traffic Law Enforcement

Police Chief Krantz says the city is considering introducing automatic red light and speed enforcement

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) – Members of the Bend community were invited to a Public Safety Day open house at the Bend Municipal Court Monday night to learn how Bend police and transportation teams plan to improve traffic safety and enforce traffic laws.

As the city grows, so does traffic, concerns and the need to control it.

This open house and public forum was an opportunity to bring the Bend Police Department together with the community, listen to concerns and find answers.

Cheryl Stark, chair of the Summit West Neighborhood District, said, “By far the most important concern or issue for all residents related to traffic and safety is speed.”

According to recent statistics, road accidents remain one of the leading causes of death worldwide, claiming millions of lives every year.

In response to local traffic problems, Police Chief Mike Krantz is taking a multi-pronged approach to address the root causes of these tragedies.

Speeding is always one of the biggest problems we hear about, and it’s visible. And the concerns about traffic are really increasing because it’s one of the most visible things in our community,” Krantz said. “It also causes the most damage and destruction in our community in terms of the cost of traffic crashes, lives and injuries.”

According to Bend Police, technology is one of the most innovative ways to address traffic problems and make roads safer.

Krantz said, “We are looking at an automated enforcement program, which is essentially automated red light and speed limit enforcement. It involves setting up a system, and when someone violates the rules, whether it’s running a red light or a speed limit, the system automatically takes a photo, and ultimately, through a process, a citation is sent to the registered owner of the vehicle.”

In addition to automatic monitoring, the city plans to better educate the population about road safety through coordinated campaigns, including installing speed bumps, creating curb extensions, extending the bike path and raising zebra crossings.

It also promotes the use of public transport and cycling. Several projects are currently underway to make cycling safer for children and also for drivers.

Bend Police say combating traffic problems can be an uphill battle, but they will continue to implement new and innovative methods to combat these problems and keep the public safer.