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Public-images-osm logo.svg enforcement
Fixed speed camera.svg
Devices that measure and document traffic violations and their coverage zone Edit or translate this description.
Group: Restrictions
  • nodewayarea - device
  • node - from
  • node - to
  • way - section
  • node - force
Status: approvedPage for proposal


This relation documents different kinds of permanently installed devices that measure and document traffic violations, such as:

  • speed traps
  • red light cameras
  • distance between vehicles measuring
  • weight check (heavy goods vehicles)
  • ordinary traffic checks (papers, use of alcohol, etc.)
  • compliance with road toll regulations (currently specifically the Toll Collect system in Germany)
  • Average Speed Check (SPECS)

These devices belong to the same class of objects and shall therefore use the same tagging schema with different values. Sometimes a combination of values is required if the device serves more than one function (e.g., both a speed trap and red light camera in one device).

Where to map?

Note that some countries forbid mapping traffic enforcement installations. If rendering or displaying in a routing software or alerting in a routing software is forbidden anywhere, you can add the information to the map - renderer and routing software will make sure to follow the law. Therefore, routing software shall offer traffic enforcement features as plug-ins, so the user can choose if he wants to install the feature.


Traffic enforcement devices are not a place you'd want to go and are therefore not an amenity.

Create a single relation for each traffic enforcement device, if there are several, as each can measure different things to vehicles from different directions.

Key Value Example Comment
type enforcement enforcement The type of relation.
enforcement maxspeed / traffic_signals / check / access / maxweight / maxheight / mindistance maxspeed The type of enforcement.
enforcement toll toll HGV toll enforcement camera bridges and pillars in Germany (see Toll Collect on Wikipedia), checking system compliance.

For normal toll bridges or gantries with no barrier to impede traffic that directly trigger payment please use highway=toll_gantry

enforcement average_speed average_speed Average speed measuring speed camera system / Section Control (see SPECS_(speed_camera) on Wikipedia)
maxspeed number; specify unit if not in km/h 60 The maximum speed (optional, only specify if enforcement=maxspeed)
maxweight number; specify unit if not in tonnes 16 The maximum weight (optional, only specify if enforcement=maxweight)
maxheight number; specify unit if not in metres 4 The maximum height (optional, only specify if enforcement=maxheight)
mindistance number; specify unit if not in metres 80 The minimum vehicle distance (optional, only specify if enforcement=mindistance)
maxwidth number; specify unit if not in metres 4 The maximum vehicle width (optional, only specify if enforcement=maxwidth)

The "mindistance" enforcement is for following distance. The "check" enforcement is for a checkpoint.


Type Role Recurrence? Comment
nodewayarea device one or more Placed where the enforcement device is located. For a large device (e.g. an HGV scale), a way or area may be preferred (that must be connected to the same way). Note that the device might not be on the same way as the from (and optional to) nodes; e.g. a speed camera will often be on the side of the road).
node from one or more Node on the highway from which the enforcement is checked. Placed at the same place as signs (e.g. "radar controlled", "traffic signals ahead") if present. If not, estimate a sensible distance where a driver would need to be warned of the enforcement if driving with allowed speed, or the usual legal distance of such warning.
node to one or more - in some cases optional Node where the enforcement ends.
  • Optional if device and from roles are on the same way. In this case, the device acts as the to member.
  • Required if device and from roles aren't on the same way (e.g., speed camera, turn restriction), to make clear in which direction the enforcement occurs.
way section one or more Line for the section control (SPECS / Section Control)
node force one or more - optional A device (e.g. light or barrier) which enforce the rule being applied in the relation.


Example 1: Simple Redlight camera

A redlight camera at a crossing.


Relation: type=enforcement enforcement=traffic_signals

Example 2: Redlight camera for turning left only

A redlight camera at a crossing, only taking photos of cars coming from the west turning left to the north.


Relation: type=enforcement enforcement=traffic_signals

Note: Use the "to" role if the device is placed in a way it affects vehicles going to different directions differently. As shown in example 1 the "to" role is optional, as long as the device node is member of the road way.

Example 3: Speed Camera

Example 3a: Simple speed camera on the street

A speed camera on or in the middle of the street, taking pictures of vehicles coming from the west going to the east.


Relation: type=enforcement enforcement=maxspeed maxspeed=60

Example 3b: Simple speed camera next to the street

A speed camera next to the street, taking pictures of vehicles coming from the west going to the east.


Relation: type=enforcement enforcement=maxspeed maxspeed=60

Simple video tutorial on doing this in JOSM:

Simple video tutorial on doing this in Potlatch:

Example 3c: Speed camera making pictures from the back

A speed camera on a very high post on the other side of individually mapped lanes, taking pictures of vehicles coming from the west going to the east, taking the pictures from the back to see licence plates of motorbikes.


Relation: type=enforcement enforcement=maxspeed maxspeed=60

  • "==" Way: These are the lanes of the opposite direction of this motorway.
  • "#" Node: relation=device,
  • "*" Node: relation=from
  • "o" Node: relation=to (mandatory, because the device is not on the road)

Example 4: Speed camera for both directions

A speed camera next to the street, that can be turned in both directions.


Relation1: type=enforcement enforcement=maxspeed maxspeed=60

Relation2: type=enforcement enforcement=maxspeed maxspeed=60

Note: This is not done in one relation, because then it would not be normalized.

Example 5: Distance between vehicles

A camera films your vehicle, measuring if you have enough distance to the vehicle ahead, only for vehicles from the west going to the east.


Relation: type=enforcement enforcement=mindistance

Example 6: Maximum weight

The police separates some heavy goods vehicles from the motorway to the parking lot to check for maxweight violations.

             \        /   

Relation: type=enforcement enforcement=maxweight

Example 7: Height check before tunnel

(This example is found at Elbtunnel, Hamburg, Germany) A light barrier checking if a vehicle coming from the west violates the maxheight for a tunnel. If a vehicle is to high to pass, an automatic red light and road block will be activated.


Relation: type=enforcement enforcement=maxheight maxheight=3.80 or maxheight:legal=3.80, if you want: maxheight:physical=3.89

Note: Why is this so much more complicated than the other examples? Height checking devices are not for fun, and not for collecting fees, they are installed to avoid trucks crashing against tunnel walls. Therefore there are often automatic road blocking installations. If such installations are not present, the "force" role is optional, of course!



Quality assurance

Possible Mistagging

If you know places with this tag, verify if it could be tagged with another tag.
Automated edits are strongly discouraged unless you really know what you are doing!

Missing maxspeed value for enforcement relations

See also


  1. How to add a Speed Camera in JOSM online
  2. ID-editor_create_relation_(enforcement) online
  3. How to add a speed camera in Potlatch online