LAFOLLETTE, TN. (WLAF)- A change in the law will bring license plate reading cameras to LaFollette. Flock Cameras, as they are commonly known, are solar-powered traffic cameras that run on their own cellular network.

Starting this month, the Tennessee Department of Transportation no longer has to authorize the placement of Flock Cameras on its right of ways. The law change is what cleared the way for the City of LaFollette to install two cameras in the city limits.

The cameras were budgeted for last year but installation was delayed pending the change in the law, according to LaFollette Police Chief Steve Wallen.

“This is not about tickets,” Wallen said of the cameras. While they are used to read license plates, these will not be for the purpose of issuing tickets, he said. “It does not shoot any radar,” Wallen said.

Flock Cameras are used for the monitoring and deterrent of criminal activity.

Currently, there are over 2,000 law enforcement agencies utilizing the cameras, according to, the company that manufactures the cameras.

Other East Tennessee communities have been using the cameras. In Knox County, there are 18 Flock Cameras in use. The use of the cameras has resulted in 120 arrests, 97 stolen cars recovered and over $1 million in stolen property recovered, the county’s website said.

“This is about major felonies,” Wallen said of the installation of the cameras.

When a car passes the camera it will instantly capture an image. “No personal information is disclosed unless you click on the car,” said LPD Capt. Charles Duff.

“Flock Cameras are typically used when a major felony is committed or there has been a child abduction,” said Duff. “The cameras are able to find subtle distinguishing features of a car such as a bumper sticker,” Duff said.

Calling the cameras a “game changer” Duff said they are further useful because they are linked with the other Flock Cameras in use throughout the country.

Each camera comes with a $2,500 price tag, which includes installation.

“If it saves one kid’s life, it is worth it,” Wallen said.


4 Replies to “LaFollette installing traffic cameras”

  1. From all the accidents between CCHS and Hunters Branch a traffic light needs installed. Traffic is more abundant with summer bringing in travelers. It’s difficult for those entering the highway is getting more an more difficult!

  2. Speed control on the “4 lane” would be a good measure for averting accidents with the added measure of traffic control devices. I have observed excessive speed on the local roads of all types of vehicles. Commercial, general public, governmental agencies (police, sheriff, fire, utilities, and administrative vehicles which should be setting the example). Slowing the speed of local drivers is a real challenge but can be done with the right campaign maybe in conjunction with THP and all other local agencies. Just my thoughts on the matter.

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