Puyallup has Red Light Cameras that are breaking the law!

Thanks to Amanda for bringing the 2 intersections in Puyallup that have illegal red light cameras to our attention! The 2 locations are on the corner or 94th (or 9th) & South Hill Park Drive, as well as Meridian & 31st Ave SE. The problem with those 2 intersections is that South Hill Park Drive and 31st Ave SE are not arterial streets. The reason that matters is because Washington State law says: ” Use of automated traffic safety cameras is restricted to two-arterial intersections, railroad crossings, and school speed zones only.” We know that these 2 roads are not arterials because we have a copy of the classification map the the city provided to Amanda. She used it when she went to court to fight a ticket that she received on 31st AVE SE. Her ticket was dismissed.

Click to view the full image

I was interviewed by KOMO 4 news this afternoon about this subject. They were going to talk to the city next. Hopefully the city will do the right thing and give refunds to all the people who were ticketed at these locations… but I am not holding my breath.
You can view the full classification map HERE and to view the original map (without my notations) click HERE



21 Responses
  1. I got a ticket here too..my light had just turned red, there was no green light on the other side to turn yet, and it was very early in the morning traffic was light, so I did not make a complete stop, but enough that if a car had been coming I had plenty of time to stop..I rolled, then stopped, then went and got the $124 ticket…sucked…

  2. Amanda

    Tiffany – Another piece of documentation you might be interested in is the IRLJ 6.2 for the state of Washington. This is the fee schedule set by the Supreme Court of the State of Washington for traffic infractions. http://www.courts.wa.gov/court_rules/pdf/CLJIRLJ6

    A failure to stop (RCW 46.61.050, which is what is cited on red light camera tickets) is $42. Note that the IRLJ clearly states: "The penalty for any infraction listed in this rule may not be changed by local court rule." So, Puyallup placing a $124 fine on this infraction is a violation of the Supreme Court as well.

    1. jdklmk

      Apparently the City of Puyallup is aware of controversy at 9th and South Hill Park Drive. They told us today that the classification map isn't accurate and it is an arterial. No Arguing. We felt treated with much disrespect when trying to dismiss our right turn ticket at that intersection. I would love to see those cameras go away. We are now convinced it is strictly a money earner for the city.

    2. The link to the fee schedule is broken…anyone have a current link? Has anyone challenged the $124 for running a red light in Puyallup and won? If so, how much should it be?

  3. hayschv

    I received a ticket in this area, and sold a vehicle last year which was properly reported as sold and got about 3 red light camera tickets after the fact. To make a long story short, i disputed these right away, and then I got a letter from this red light cam company saying that I did not disputed these in time so I owed for all the tickets. Of course I called and after getting the run around for hours I was told by their supervisor to call the city of Puyallup and was provided the phone number, I did this and the lady I spoke to for the city was very rude and basically told me it wasn't her problem. Finally, I was at the end of my rope, I called the red light camera company and threatened to sue, then the supervisor there finally admitted to the mistake, finally! I did in fact dispute these in time, but THEY did not process the mail in a timely manner. But anyhow, if I had to go thru this much trouble, I can imagine what all the people in Puyallup must be going thru, and all the people in the US that have to deal with this greed and complete corruption of city government for money. It makes me ill. Its downright criminal and I'm over it!!

  4. jdklmk

    I cannot believe the city of Puyallup. Just came home from court with all the facts, including the classification map on this website. I received a ticket at 9th and South Hill Park Drive, for making a free right turn. I used the argument of it not being an arterial. The judge said it was and there was no arguing with him, and that that intersection is one of the most dangerous. I have never seen an accident there. I felt like a little child being scolded and don't dare ask to see the information. He was not interested in the map I had. He said he had one that showed it was an arterial. Grrr. I am so fed up with these cameras, but also with the nonsense that goes with trying to get at the truth. So, I guess it doesn't matter what the facts are.

    1. bancams

      The classification map was provided by the city of Puyallup. It is correct – the judge is incorrect. I would contact the city council and write to your legislator and tell them this is one of the many reasons that "photo enforcement" can't be fixed – it needs to be repealed and made illegal. http://bancams.com/repeal-cameras/

  5. jdklmk

    I have a question. Can speed bumps be placed on arterials? There are 2 of them on South Hill Park Drive and I thought they could not be on an arterial.

    1. bancams

      When KOMO did the story on this the Puyallup cop they talked to admitted that South Hill Park drive is NOT an arterial. BUT he tried to say that the on-ramp to 512 is an arterial (which it's not) – and 512 is a State highway and isn't even even Puyallup's jurisdiction!

  6. crcutter

    I too have had two tickets, one from each of these locations. My most recent was 9th and South Hill Park Drive that I recieved notice of delinguent notice of infraction and I waived my rights to appeal or hearing. I didn't get my initial ticket.

    So what to do about this? I totally am on board to fight this. I drive about 1200 miles a month and have no traffic violations or accidents with the exception to these red lights. Totally unfair.

  7. mmagruder315

    I received a ticket, and took all this info you all have provided into court. The judge read RCW 47.26.090, as The City of Puyallup's response. It sucks, but when they have it in an RCW saying a collector street is an arterial, what can you do?

    RCW 47.26.090
    "Arterial" defined.

    The term "arterial" as used in this chapter means any state highway, county road, or city street, in an urban area, that is functionally classified as a principal arterial, minor arterial, or collector street by the department in cooperation with the board, regional transportation planning organizations, cities, and counties. The board shall develop criteria and procedures for designating arterials in the incorporated cities and towns lying outside urban areas.

    1. law1204

      The wording of the RCW does NOT define 31st (a collector) as an arterial. What it says is that the transportation boards, cities, AND counties all have to get together and develop criteria that designates an arterial, and that said bodies can define any street as an arterial that they want to. But, BUT, apparently the city of Puyallup didn't get the memo, which they should have if they had been involved with the designation process (as they should have been) that made 31st an arterial. It would have been reflected on their map if 31st had been made an arterial according to the process defined in the RCW. It's not designated as an arterial on any map. Ergo, 31st is not an arterial. If the judge interpreted RCW 47.26.090 that 31st is an arterial, he apparently can't read or has his head in his ass. Sorry I'm so late with this response, but if this happens to anyone else, appeal appeal appeal.

  8. Guy_Fawks

    I just joined this because I just went through the intersection of 31st. AVE and Meridian about 15 minutes ago when I saw a flash. The sad thing was that I cleared the intersection. I was pissed, because I found out that the ticket was $124 on the Puyallup city website. That is a lot of money to me. Luckly, it will not go on my record and the images will go to a processing station to be looked at but I am still a little ticked. If the camera showed that I was in the wrong, I was going to go ahead and pay the ticket anyway until I saw this. The fact that Puyallup illegally placed the cameras at the intersection made me reconsider. I will now definitely challenge the ticket. Yes it is just a red light ticket but $124 is still $124.

  9. What’s the rule on following a semi truck & trailer through an intersection? I was 3 car lengths behind 2 semi trucks. They were driving side by side down River Road…the light turned red just as it came into view for me. The fancy video they sent me clearly shows me enter the intersection while the light was red. Any help here? Or do I just pay the $124 🙁

  10. How do you know if a citation has been issued? About 2 months ago, the cameras flashed as we went through the intersection at 31st/Meridian. We were certain that the light was yellow when we entered the intersection, and were surprised by the camera. The mailing address for the registration was a PO box that has since been closed (but the forwarding order should still be active). I have since updated that address, but we have not received any notice. What are the chances that there was a car behind us that triggered the camera and we are fine? Or that our notice got lost in the mail?