The Ability to Control HOA Speeding is an issue that Homeowner Association communities face. Sometimes the truth is painful.
The answer depends on whether your roads are private or municipal-owned streets. Private community roads are not routinely patrolled by law enforcement. Law enforcement cannot legally control civil traffic issues on private roads. Law enforcement can investigate criminal matters, but their jurisdiction stops there.
Because of that fact, the HOA itself is left to control speeding.
If you live in a smaller community, regulation becomes more difficult. You need to rely on cost-effective means such as speed bumps, speed limit signs, and stop signs at crosswalks. Sending out regular email reminders is also a good tactic, especially when school is in session. Smaller associations need to rely on the goodwill of the homeowners that live in the community. Oftentimes drivers are unaware of community speed limits and are mistaken about their speeds or ignore signage and speed despite them. Electronic speed measuring signs serve as driver feedback and have been shown to improve awareness, decrease speeds, and positively impact driver behavior. They generally result in an 80% decrease in speed. It is a good idea to rent a solar-powered unit for the short term to give it a try before you buy.
Cranberry Township hosts a Slow Down Campaign two (2) times a year to aid associations in controlling awareness of speeding in the community. One when school lets out for summer and then again before school begins in the fall. Yard signs and radar units are leveraged to measure before and after data. Typical results yield heightened awareness and slower speeds. Another excellent program is Keep Kids Alive Drive 25. A helpful podcast is included below.
In a nutshell, there is simply no absolute way to fine the violators. This fact can be quite upsetting and frustrating to homeowners. The reality is that you do not have enough money to effectively and legally control traffic issues. Many people demand that the management company step in; this is beyond their legal powers’ scope. When you see a neighbor going too fast, you have no resources. Without tangible proof, in the way of radar guns, you cannot fine.
Much larger gated HOA communities with deeper pockets have taken the matter into their own hands for many reasons. Because of the community’s size, the problem becomes a more significant issue, especially in the entrance and main arteries that access the property.
Can an HOA with private roads issue speeding fines and parking tickets?
The answer is yes because the municipality cannot enforce civil traffic issues. The HOA can enforce speed, stop signs, and traffic signals. But before you get too excited about the prospect, you need to consider how to implement this endeavor.
- All vehicles need to be registered; ID needs to be uniformly visible on the vehicle.
- A scannable barcode is a viable solution.
- You would need a full-time security service with portable bar code readers and clearly outlined duties.
- You will need to purchase radar guns that are routinely calibrated.
- You may need to set up video surveillance in parking lots.
Once the violation has is identified, send the individual a warning first and a fine at the second offense. The penalty wouldn’t be a “ticket” per se; hopefully, the financial penalty would be enough to convince the homeowners to slow down. The problem arises with visitors, as you do not have their vehicle information and cannot enforce your rules. Think twice before permitting security guards the ability to “pull over” individuals.
Rinaldo Acri, CEO of Acri Community Realty, says, “When living in a planned community environment, it is essential to be a good neighbor. Realize that not obeying traffic rules can irrevocably damage other’s well-being. That appointment can wait; in the grand scheme of protecting life, seconds matter. Drive 25 and keep kids alive.”