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Mitchell Andrus
03-18-2010, 2:01 PM
Speed trap got me. I recognize the spot (they included photos) and it's just after a highway off ramp so you can't help but remain at nearly highway speed. Offense in TN, mailed to NJ, fine goes to a company in OH made out to the municipality in TN. It's a revenue builder pure and simple.

The 'notice of violation' for $90.00 includes pictures of my car/lic plate, etc.

In part.... "your vehicle was not obeying the speed requirements described in the traffic ordinances."

Bad vehicle. BAD! BAD!!!

Can they send you a bill because your car was speeding? Yes, they can. It's not a 'moving violation', it's an infraction of a local ordinance. There are law firms that will help you fight these but the $90.00 is cheaper.... gottcha!

There is a notice on it that says this can't be used to assess points nor be used to increase my insurance. That's a good thing as there's no way to tell who's driving.

Maybe there will come a day when breaking a law won't be seen as an act that benefits a community. Think about it.... They have to hope you do something wrong to boost the local taxpayers' coffers. Maybe next they'll encourage lawlessness just so they can balance their budgets with out of state dollars. Ours.

There is a county in CA that takes in a MILLION DOLLARS a MONTH at just a few intersections... the violation???? Not coming to a complete stop while making a right on red.

I'm moving to a house with a long driveway soon. You can all jump in the river - and then pay the fine when they catch you swimming out of season.

<rant off>
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Rod Sheridan
03-18-2010, 2:06 PM
Not to make light of it Mitchel, I've received a couple of photo radar tickets myself.

I personally like photo radar, I call it a voluntary tax, and I like voluntary taxes the best of all the types.

(He says in tax month in Canada)................Regards, Rod.

Eric DeSilva
03-18-2010, 2:14 PM
Knew a guy who got one of those in Germany years ago. He had rented a 911 and had made the mistaken assumption that all autobahns were unlimited speed. They sent him a bill with an 8x10 black and white with his face clearly visible in the driver's seat of the car, and a rather outrageous speed printed on the bottom on the photo. He ended up paying the fine and framing the picture.

Chris Padilla
03-18-2010, 2:19 PM
Mitch,

I was in San Francisco a couple weeks back and blasted through an intersection while still yellow but a tad too late. A flash of light went off somewhere in the upper right of my field of view and I knew instantly what it was.

I had the last laugh, however, as my truck (and car for that matter) do not have the front plate installed despite the fact that it is the law in California. My car is a 2001...hasn't had front plate since I picked it up brand new...haven't been hassled about it. The truck is newer (2007) but no hassles there, either.

Back home in Colorado a few years ago, apparently I went through an "auto toll" lane that I wasn't supposed to. Got a ticket in the mail some months later. I feigned ignorance (I'm a CA driver!) and only had to pay some minimal fine of $12 or something instead of the $80 they wanted.

Mitchell Andrus
03-18-2010, 2:28 PM
Knew a guy who got one of those in Germany years ago. He had rented a 911 and had made the mistaken assumption that all autobahns were unlimited speed. They sent him a bill with an 8x10 black and white with his face clearly visible in the driver's seat of the car, and a rather outrageous speed printed on the bottom on the photo. He ended up paying the fine and framing the picture.

Here's one for ya....


Well, my son was flying us at 2,400 ft in a Cessna. Mt BIL flies 777's for Air Canada and has a shot of his Garmin doing 470 mph.
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Robert McGowen
03-18-2010, 2:44 PM
I had the last laugh, however, as my truck (and car for that matter) do not have the front plate installed despite the fact that it is the law in California.

I feigned ignorance

I guess I don't get it when people purposefully go out of their way to break the law and feel the need to brag about how they got away with it. :(

Lee Schierer
03-18-2010, 3:37 PM
We could use one of those on our road. There are a couple of drivers who come up to a 4 way stop intersection about 1/2 mile from my house and if they don't see a car, they just keep on going at the same speed they don't even bother to slow down. A few of them even have kids in the cars.

Some people, mostly kids do this at night, only they turn off their driving lights to see if they see any lights coming from the other directions. If they don't see lights they don't stop.

Horton Brasses
03-18-2010, 3:50 PM
Knew a guy who got one of those in Germany years ago. He had rented a 911 and had made the mistaken assumption that all autobahns were unlimited speed. They sent him a bill with an 8x10 black and white with his face clearly visible in the driver's seat of the car, and a rather outrageous speed printed on the bottom on the photo. He ended up paying the fine and framing the picture.

I got two robo tickets in Germany last summer-and I didn't have a rented 911. One was on a Autobahn on ramp and I don't know where the other was. I got a pair of parking tickets as well. :mad:

Eric DeSilva
03-18-2010, 3:55 PM
Some people, mostly kids do this at night, only they turn off their driving lights to see if they see any lights coming from the other directions. If they don't see lights they don't stop.

Let's just hope that the people going east-west and the people going north-south don't both try this at the same time...

Ken Fitzgerald
03-18-2010, 4:50 PM
With my oldest son a deputy sheriff and my daughter a former police officer and sheriff's department dispatcher....you can bet "Dad" drives extremely carefully and legally! My kids would enjoy it too much if I got caught doing something.:o

Jeff Monson
03-18-2010, 5:00 PM
With my oldest son a deputy sheriff and my daughter a former police officer and sheriff's department dispatcher....you can bet "Dad" drives extremely carefully and legally! My kids would enjoy it too much if I got caught doing something.:o


Know the feeling Ken, one of my best friends is a sheriff. We do alot of hunting together and needless to say I'm always late...its so tempting to push an extra 5 mph to make up time, I get rode like a rented mule if I even try. :mad:

Bryan Morgan
03-18-2010, 5:40 PM
I guess I don't get it when people purposefully go out of their way to break the law and feel the need to brag about how they got away with it. :(

I'm a huge fan of civil disobedience, especially with these questionable revenue generators. "I will not obey"

I have a few friends that got "busted" by these speed cams and none of them had to pay anything. Not sure what they used as their defense. One of them got caught by the red light cam (its actually a video camera they send you a web site to watch yourself "breaking the law") and he didn't have to pay anything either. Something about no officer actually personally witnessing you doing something.

David Prince
03-18-2010, 5:45 PM
Speed trap got me. I recognize the spot (they included photos) and it's just after a highway off ramp so you can't help but remain at nearly highway speed. Offense in TN, mailed to NJ, fine goes to a company in OH made out to the municipality in TN. It's a revenue builder pure and simple.

Maybe there will come a day when breaking a law won't be seen as an act that benefits a community. Think about it.... They have to hope you do something wrong to boost the local taxpayers' coffers. Maybe next they'll encourage lawlessness just so they can balance their budgets with out of state dollars. Ours.

There is a county in CA that takes in a MILLION DOLLARS a MONTH at just a few intersections... the violation???? Not coming to a complete stop while making a right on red.

Just think if people obeyed the speed limit signs and intersections, there would be no reason for the cameras!:rolleyes:

There would be less reason for police officers for traffic control. Departments could downsize, so therefore less need to supplement their budgets!

Ken Fitzgerald
03-18-2010, 6:49 PM
I'm a huge fan of civil disobedience, especially with these questionable revenue generators. "I will not obey"

I have a few friends that got "busted" by these speed cams and none of them had to pay anything. Not sure what they used as their defense. One of them got caught by the red light cam (its actually a video camera they send you a web site to watch yourself "breaking the law") and he didn't have to pay anything either. Something about no officer actually personally witnessing you doing something.

Sadly it's this attitude that kills people when they drive too fast in crowded neighborhoods....or too fast for road conditions....or after having a few drinks....and of course....they are never at fault.....even when some innocent person is seriously injured or killed. They are always questionable revenue generators in the eyes of those caught violating.

I am part of the crowd that thinks people ought to be responsible for their actions and if you don't like a law....get it changed or obey it.

Mitchell Andrus
03-18-2010, 7:12 PM
Just think if people obeyed the speed limit signs and intersections, there would be no reason for the cameras!:rolleyes:



The reason for the cameras isn't to get the accused violators to slow down ( a parked police car will do this very well), the cameras are there to catch them after they've been allowed to speed up.

Think about it. Drop the speed limit 10 MPH for 1/2 mile and set up a camera and send tickets to out of towners unlikely to challenge a $90.00 'fine'. Who was endangered by that extra 10 MPH? Who is being protected?

Notice that I didn't really get a speeding ticket. It doesn't say anywhere on it that I was speeding. It's called a violation of an ordinance. My CAR was speeding and as the owner, I'm being FINED - I can only imagine because I allowed it to happen.

From: (referencing 'my' speed camera)

http://www2.tricities.com/tri/news/local/article/1662_ticketed_by_bluff_city_traffic_cameras_nettin g_city_150k_in_fees/41486/

He (the delivery driver) is one of almost 1,700 people who are the first to be cited for driving too fast through a 1.3-mile stretch of 11E that is a 45 mph zone. That number of citations went out during the first six weeks of the camera’s operation.
Although the cameras went online in December, they began issuing citations on Jan. 1.
The stretch of highway monitored by the cameras starts about 200 yards in front of Pardner’s Bar-B-Que and Steak restaurant and ends at the Piney Flats crossroads.
And as the city sets out to collect the $150,000 worth of fines and court costs those citations could yield, those caught on camera will get a letter in the mail from an Arizona-based company that details the ticket and gives them a Web site address where they can pay the $90 fine, along with an 800 number for questions.


Here's the important part of the article:


Another reason for the lack of court challenges could be that if a driver requests a court hearing and he or she loses, the citation’s non-moving violation becomes a moving violation, which means it shows up on his or her driving record and could affect car insurance rates.

At the rate of 1,700 'fines' in six weeks, that's 1.3 million dollars in fines/year. It's not enforcement that they're after.
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Mitchell Andrus
03-18-2010, 7:51 PM
I am part of the crowd that thinks people ought to be responsible for their actions and if you don't like a law....get it changed or obey it.

I agree, but sometimes laws don't serve the right purpose. It's entirely likely I was going as fast as they say, but I don't remember 3 weeks ago to that exact spot. It's entirely likely that the speed limit is properly posted, but I can't look and see. The radar setup might be accurate, but I can't know unless I risk going to court 600 miles away and challenging the fine (If I loose, I get points on my license, so I better not risk it). This all stinks really bad.

I'm going to send in the lousy $90.00 not because I'm convinced I'm guilty, but because they've got me by the shorts. I will also be just a bit more careful when leaving a highway and will slow down a bit sooner. I got caught and I don't know where the next camera is.

But, the manner in which I am said to be guilty rubs me and many the wrong way.

I will send the fine, I'll also send a letter to the chamber of commerce. They only get me to spend $90.00 in their town once, that was the once. They chose as a community to target out-of-towners, those most unlikely to know the speed had been changed and that the cameras had been set up. I have no doubt locals are let off easy when they show up in local muni court. I'll not be spending any more money in Bluff City, TN (there is a great restaurant there BTW). I hope they don't miss me and the other 1,700 potential shoppers fined in just 6 weeks, too much.
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Lee Ludden
03-18-2010, 8:06 PM
They have those things up on most of the freeways here in AZ. There is a well publicized effort to get them removed, but I would hate to see them go. I commute about 50 miles a day on the freeway, and since they installed these things, I have noticed that there are a lot fewer people passing me. Can they be abused? Of course. But I think they are a fine addition to live officers.

I haven't had a speeding ticket in over 20 years - I don't speed. But if I was speeding, it would be because I was in a hurry, and I'd rather get a ticket in the mail than have an officer pull me over and waste 20 minutes writing me a ticket.

Jim Rimmer
03-18-2010, 8:09 PM
Is it just a coincidence that when I opened this a ticket attorney banner add popped up?

Houston installed red light cameras a year or so ago. My stance has always been just tell me the truth - you are trying to generate revenue for the city. Don't give me the bull about safety. If the city wanted safety they would have read the studies done in San Diego, Phoenix and several other large cities that stated that in order to decrease accidents at red light intersections the most effective thing is to lengthen the yellow about 3 seconds. The cameras have generated a lot of revenue and shifted the accidents from t-bone collisons to rear end collisions with no signicant decrease in the number of accidents.

I don't care one way or the other whether they have cameras, just be honest about the reason. (We, my wife, have received one red light ticket - according to LOML, it was a case of get a ticket or have a wreck.)

Ken Fitzgerald
03-18-2010, 8:14 PM
Mitch,

I fail to see how they are targeting non-residents.

Do you really believe that you should be granted an exemption because you have never driven on road before?

Chris Kennedy
03-18-2010, 9:35 PM
I'm sorry, but I just can't be sympathetic.

'just after a highway off ramp so you can't help but remain at nearly highway speed."

You are off the highway -- you aren't in a cluster of cars, maintaining speed. You have exited the highway and consequently, the road you are going onto isn't a highway. Clearly the speed limit is going to be less than the highway.

You are "after a highway off ramp" so you know you are going onto lower speed limit roads. Cry me a river. You were speeding and you got nailed.

Chris

David Prince
03-18-2010, 9:47 PM
I would have to say that if I felt wrongfully accused, that I would drive the 600 miles and make it a point to appear in court. Points or no points, there is a principle!

Now if I had a tendancy to speed and thought I probably deserved the ticket because I probably was speeding, then I would suck it up and pay.

Refusing to do business in a community that has this camera is ignorant behavior. (no insult intended) The restaurant owner did not put up the camera. Should he /she use politics to twist the arm of the local polititians to force its removal?

If the local government or law enforcement agency is putting up a camera in a unique location that could be viewed as a true "speed trap", I would think the local community would voice its opposition very soon! Revenue or not, the majority of people do have a conscience and wouldn't tolerate it.

Bill Cunningham
03-18-2010, 10:17 PM
The police in Ontario have a new tool! A cruiser can sit on the side of the road, and scan license plates at 2000 per hour (they say their only scanning 1500 per hour right now) Sooooo if you wait a few days after your plate sticker expires to get it renewed (like I do every year :rolleyes:, I wait till the Saturday after my birthday unless it falls on a Saturday just because of convenience:) ) Yer gonna get a fine if you drive by one of these cop-scanners! But on the bright side, it's also checking for stolen cars, expired drivers licenses.. etc.. Pretty soon, yer not going to get away with anything..

Mitchell Andrus
03-18-2010, 11:38 PM
Mitch,

I fail to see how they are targeting non-residents.

Do you really believe that you should be granted an exemption because you have never driven on road before?


The locals had months to learn of the camera, it was a huge controversy and still is. They also got three weeks of warnings, not fines. At a rate of 1,700 fines in 6 weeks (40 per day) you have to know LOTS of locals got warnings. I didn't get a first time free-bee. THAT targets non-residents for fines. Alternately, parking a police car gives everyone a fair shot at slowing down in time to avoid the fine.

Also, the company sending the fine notices is paid $40.00 per fine. 40/day x $40.00 is $11,200.00 per week on ONE camera. Can't a computer be made to ticket ONLY out-of-state cars? Yes. Can't a clerk toss out the locals' tickets to keep the natives from getting grumpy about the camera? Yes. Don't you think if they had to falsely swear that the system is in working order they would? I do.

Yes, I think they target non-residents - the whole thing stinks.

If a judge can be bribed into sending kids to for-profit detention centers, a speed camera has to be suspect at least.
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Keith Westfall
03-18-2010, 11:40 PM
Now if I had a tendency to speed and thought I probably deserved the ticket because I probably was speeding, then I would suck it up and pay.
If you got a ticket, you were speeding. All of the talk about correct radar guns, speed traps or whatever, is just talk.

As a "responsible driver" it is up to you to obey what signage is on the road, whether you think it is right or not. Want to speed? Go ahead. Just don't moan about it when you get caught!




Notice that I didn't really get a speeding ticket. It doesn't say anywhere on it that I was speeding. It's called a violation of an ordinance. My CAR was speeding and as the owner, I'm being FINED - I can only imagine because I allowed it to happen.Perhaps if you could convince them that your CAR goes out and drives by it'self, then maybe they wouldn't hold you responsible.



One of the greatest abilities we have as a human being, is that we can make choices - but after making the choice, we have to accept the consequence of our actions...

... so, make a right choice = right consequence;
.... wrong choice = bad consequence.

Mitchell Andrus
03-18-2010, 11:44 PM
The police in Ontario have a new tool! A cruiser can sit on the side of the road, and scan license plates at 2000 per hour (they say their only scanning 1500 per hour right now) Sooooo if you wait a few days after your plate sticker expires to get it renewed (like I do every year :rolleyes:, I wait till the Saturday after my birthday unless it falls on a Saturday just because of convenience:) ) Yer gonna get a fine if you drive by one of these cop-scanners! But on the bright side, it's also checking for stolen cars, expired drivers licenses.. etc.. Pretty soon, yer not going to get away with anything..

The difference between a clerk sending you a fine for speeding, and a cop finding an expired tag is that the cop doing the plate scanning isn't being paid on a per-plate basis to simply say that the plate is expired. If it's expired, it's expired.
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Mitchell Andrus
03-19-2010, 12:04 AM
If you got a ticket, you were speeding. All of the talk about correct radar guns, speed traps or whatever, is just talk.


Keith,

The big picture here is that I may not have been driving my car. If I contest the ticket and lose, I get the points for a moving violation simply because I own the car in the photographs. The penalty goes up if you lose in court.

http://www2.tricities.com/tri/news/local/article/1662_ticketed_by_bluff_city_traffic_cameras_nettin g_city_150k_in_fees/41486/

The company saying a car was speeding gets $40.00 every time they do so.

A judge was just found to be getting kickbacks from a for-profit detention center for each kid he locked up. If this can happen to a kid..... $90.00 speeding tickets, no sweat. 40 fines a day at one camera. $11,200.00 per week is plenty of incentive to say I was driving backwards going 100 in a 25.

How can I prove them wrong? The picture shows my car standing still. Really.
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Bryan Morgan
03-19-2010, 12:23 AM
Sadly it's this attitude that kills people when they drive too fast in crowded neighborhoods....

Maybe with some people... but I have a rare disease that prevents me from doing these things. Its so rare I have only encountered a handful of people on earth that still have it. Its called "self responsibility". I suffer with this ailment daily and take it very seriously. I don't drink at all, smoke, do drugs, etc. I came down with it early in life after getting the crap kicked out of me as a child by parents that actually sought to create a productive member of society. Thats why when somebody tries to tell me what I can and can't do I take offense. "I got it covered" ;)

Bryan Morgan
03-19-2010, 12:26 AM
Think about it. Drop the speed limit 10 MPH for 1/2 mile and set up a camera and send tickets to out of towners unlikely to challenge a $90.00 'fine'. Who was endangered by that extra 10 MPH? Who is being protected?

This sounds like the red light cameras that cities got caught installing and then reducing the yellow light timers... :mad:

Mitchell Andrus
03-19-2010, 12:33 AM
This sounds like the red light cameras that cities got caught installing and then reducing the yellow light timers... :mad:

Or the judge getting kickbacks from the for-profit kid's detention centers.
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Brian Ashton
03-19-2010, 3:18 AM
Speed trap got me. I recognize the spot (they included photos) and it's just after a highway off ramp so you can't help but remain at nearly highway speed. Offense in TN, mailed to NJ, fine goes to a company in OH made out to the municipality in TN. It's a revenue builder pure and simple.

The 'notice of violation' for $90.00 includes pictures of my car/lic plate, etc.

In part.... "your vehicle was not obeying the speed requirements described in the traffic ordinances."

Bad vehicle. BAD! BAD!!!

Can they send you a bill because your car was speeding? Yes, they can. It's not a 'moving violation', it's an infraction of a local ordinance. There are law firms that will help you fight these but the $90.00 is cheaper.... gottcha!

There is a notice on it that says this can't be used to assess points nor be used to increase my insurance. That's a good thing as there's no way to tell who's driving.

Maybe there will come a day when breaking a law won't be seen as an act that benefits a community. Think about it.... They have to hope you do something wrong to boost the local taxpayers' coffers. Maybe next they'll encourage lawlessness just so they can balance their budgets with out of state dollars. Ours.

There is a county in CA that takes in a MILLION DOLLARS a MONTH at just a few intersections... the violation???? Not coming to a complete stop while making a right on red.

I'm moving to a house with a long driveway soon. You can all jump in the river - and then pay the fine when they catch you swimming out of season.

<rant off>
.


I live in australia and I call it a stupid tax - and business is a boomin!!! If someone is stupid enough to give it they're smart enough to take it. And what's more it's completely voluntary but for some reason no one (other than me of course) has figured that out... I also think the governments should just come and admit is so everyone that complains will shut up. It is a revenue builder pure and simple. Again... it's completely voluntary. YMMV

PS don't bother with the argument of what if I wasn't driving... Pretty simple... don't lend your vehicle to an idiot.

Dave Haughs
03-19-2010, 6:36 AM
Here's one for ya....


Well, my son was flying us at 2,400 ft in a Cessna. Mt BIL flies 777's for Air Canada and has a shot of his Garmin doing 470 mph.
.

Yeah a friend of mine got my Garmin's max speed up to 638 for me :D

Curt Harms
03-19-2010, 7:15 AM
I agree, but sometimes laws don't serve the right purpose. It's entirely likely I was going as fast as they say, but I don't remember 3 weeks ago to that exact spot. It's entirely likely that the speed limit is properly posted, but I can't look and see. The radar setup might be accurate, but I can't know unless I risk going to court 600 miles away and challenging the fine (If I loose, I get points on my license, so I better not risk it). This all stinks really bad.

I'm going to send in the lousy $90.00 not because I'm convinced I'm guilty, but because they've got me by the shorts. I will also be just a bit more careful when leaving a highway and will slow down a bit sooner. I got caught and I don't know where the next camera is.

But, the manner in which I am said to be guilty rubs me and many the wrong way.

I will send the fine, I'll also send a letter to the chamber of commerce. They only get me to spend $90.00 in their town once, that was the once. They chose as a community to target out-of-towners, those most unlikely to know the speed had been changed and that the cameras had been set up. I have no doubt locals are let off easy when they show up in local muni court. I'll not be spending any more money in Bluff City, TN (there is a great restaurant there BTW). I hope they don't miss me and the other 1,700 potential shoppers fined in just 6 weeks, too much.
.

Wyckoff road going into Eatontown. Nice 4 lane road 55 mph. Go around a curve the speed drops to a (poorly marked) 45 mph. The grass is dead from a cop car sitting there. I got a ticket for going 16 mph over the speed limit. Not 14, which carries a lower fine. I paid it and have not and will not spend ONE PENNY in that town. I'm sure the whomever doesn't care, but if a few hundred more take the same tack.....

Ken Fitzgerald
03-19-2010, 7:33 AM
Maybe with some people... but I have a rare disease that prevents me from doing these things. Its so rare I have only encountered a handful of people on earth that still have it. Its called "self responsibility". I suffer with this ailment daily and take it very seriously. I don't drink at all, smoke, do drugs, etc. I came down with it early in life after getting the crap kicked out of me as a child by parents that actually sought to create a productive member of society. Thats why when somebody tries to tell me what I can and can't do I take offense. "I got it covered" ;)

Bryan,

In my dictionary..it's irresponsible to purposely break laws....generally speaking...speed regulations are installed and enforced for public safety...either the driver's or someone elses.

2ndly...you should have used more my of my previous quote.....where it states "It'll never happen to me."...... I had to find out once for myself....the hard way.

3rdly....there might be a number of communities who "target" drivers but I'd be willing to bet there are a hugely larger number of arrogant and irresponsible drivers who chose to selectively ignore regulations just because they personally find it incovenient for them to obey the regulation.

Ken Fitzgerald
03-19-2010, 7:51 AM
Mitch,

One of the hospitals where I service equipment is in Moscow, Idaho. There is a 3 hour parking limit on the streets around the hospital. The hospital is located near or on the edge of the Univerisity of Idaho. So to encourage college students to park somewhere else and so patients and visitors can park near the hospital and surrounding clinics, they aggressively enforce a 3 hour parking limit.

Now over the years I have paid 3 $25 parking tickets because I was inside servicing the hosptial's MR scanner...CT scanner......or x-ray equipments.

The first time I crumpled the ticket up thinking "this isn't right'.....well...the city sent a letter and a copy of the ticket to the leasing company.....who sent it on to corporate HR manager.....and I eventually received it in the mail...followed by a email and a call from my manager. "Any traffic or parking violation" is the driver's responsibilty.

Now I could whine that it is assinine that I have to pay a parking ticket when I am trying to repair or service a piece of equipment.....but if the parking regulation was not enforced...I might have to carry several hundred pounds of test equipment and tools for several blocks because I couldn't park on the street surrounding the hospital for the students parking there.

Now when I periodically forget to move my van within the 3 hour time frame...I just pay the ticket and hope the police department has a nice Christmas party.

Lee Schierer
03-19-2010, 7:54 AM
Maybe with some people... but I have a rare disease that prevents me from doing these things. Its so rare I have only encountered a handful of people on earth that still have it. Its called "self responsibility". I suffer with this ailment daily and take it very seriously. I don't drink at all, smoke, do drugs, etc. I came down with it early in life after getting the crap kicked out of me as a child by parents that actually sought to create a productive member of society. Thats why when somebody tries to tell me what I can and can't do I take offense. "I got it covered" ;)

I think I have the same disease. Just this morning I had to brake hard to avoid an accident by not one but two drivers that had to pass me to get one car farther ahead at a traffic light in their mad dash to get to a job they really don't like. We were all going about 50 and I had not over three car lengths to the car in front of me. Last night I watched several cars avoid an almost accident caused by a guy that was yakking on his cell phone and checking papers in his brief case. Everyday, I nearly get hit by drivers coming up on ramps that fail to yield because they assume the people coming up the road can and will pull over to let them on. More and more, I find that I'm driving at the speed limit because I've learned I don't have to beat everyone else to the light, to work or the next off ramp.

Mitchell Andrus
03-19-2010, 8:41 AM
Mitch,

Now over the years I have paid 3 $25 parking tickets because I was inside servicing the hosptial's MR scanner...CT scanner......or x-ray equipments.

The first time I crumpled the ticket up thinking "this isn't right'.....well...the city sent a letter and a copy of the ticket to the leasing company.....who sent it on to corporate HR manager.....and I eventually received it in the mail...followed by a email and a call from my manager. "Any traffic or parking violation" is the driver's responsibilty.

.....Now when I periodically forget to move my van within the 3 hour time frame...I just pay the ticket and hope the police department has a nice Christmas party.

There are huge differences here.

First, when you park over the limit you pretty much know it. You see the ticket, you look at your watch.... on the spot and at the time of the infraction. When a cop pulls you over for speeding you can look at your speedometer, find a speed limit sign, you pretty much know you were going a bit too fast.

But... I was sent a fine 3 weeks after the fact. I can't see the speed limit sign, can't look at the speedometer..... They don't even know I was driving.

Second, if you contest the parking violation and loose, you aren't charged with a moving violation. You pay the fine and leave.

With this particular location in Bluff City, if you contest the fine (a non-moving violation) and loose, they change the charge and you are convicted of a moving violation and get points on your license. This is legal?

Third, the meter-maid doesn't get a $40.00 commission for giving you a parking ticket. She or he is on salary, likely a local employee and can come to court if you would like to confront your accuser.

In Bluff City TN, the owner of the camera many states away in Ohio gets $40.00 when they catch me.... they also get $40.00 when they lie. Proof of an infraction is a computer file... and we all know they can be tampered with, don't we? If I drive 700 miles to contest this face to face do you think the company in Ohio will send a representative 700 miles too?

Not the same.
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Matt Meiser
03-19-2010, 8:54 AM
I know two people who've been "caught" by red light cameras in Toledo. In certain situations they are wrong when the person makes a perfectly legal right turn on red. They (the authorities) know it, they don't care.

I got bit by the electronic tolling on the highway that runs from DFW out to Plano/Frisco (121?). The first several times I was there it wasn't finished and they weren't charging tolls. Then I went and the rental car agency asked if I wanted a toll tag since they were offering them now. I told him where we we headed and he said we didn't need it. Months later I got a stack of letters in the mail from them with charges of $0.40 to $1.20--plus a $25 fee in each letter. Luckily they agreed to waive all the $25 fees which added up to a couple hundred bucks. The bad thing about that road is that there is no option to pay the toll other than a toll tag or by mail. From DFW to Frisco you get a couple tolls. And the rental agencies charge per "violation."

Tom Winship
03-19-2010, 8:57 AM
I am part of the crowd that thinks people ought to be responsible for their actions and if you don't like a law....get it changed or obey it.

Amen, Ken. There is no difference in getting a photo ticket than having a policemen pull you over for the same offense at the same location. .........get it changed or obey it.

Rod Sheridan
03-19-2010, 9:21 AM
Sadly it's this attitude that kills people when they drive too fast in crowded neighborhoods....or too fast for road conditions....or after having a few drinks....and of course....they are never at fault.....even when some innocent person is seriously injured or killed. They are always questionable revenue generators in the eyes of those caught violating.

I am part of the crowd that thinks people ought to be responsible for their actions and if you don't like a law....get it changed or obey it.

Bingo...............Rod.

Mitchell Andrus
03-19-2010, 9:36 AM
Amen, Ken. There is no difference in getting a photo ticket than having a policemen pull you over for the same offense at the same location. .........get it changed or obey it.

Yes, there is. A cop can tell if his gun isn't correctly displaying a number by looking out his window. He can tell the difference between a speeding car and the one obeying the limit, and the one being towed by a tow truck. Computers don't do this, they just send the fine.

Overseas, these systems have been in use a lot longer than here....

Passing trucks cause false readings:
http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/view/3659

$900,000.00 in errors:
http://www.thenewspaper.com/news/04/484.asp

The owner of the disabled car BEING TOWED was fined:
http://revealingerrors.com/speed_camera

Radar errors:
http://home.iprimus.com.au/johnhpowlton/radar/radarErrors.html

Radar error, dis-proven by simple math:
http://www.therawfeed.com/2005/12/engineer-proves-speed-camera-error-in.html

Vehicle fitted with a speed limiter, fined the wrong bus:
http://www.thenewspaper.com/news/18/1871.asp

Multiple errors overturned:
http://photoradarscam.com/malfunctions.php


Google 'speed camera errors' to see more examples of how a cop in person might have seen the error and saved the motorist the trouble.
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Mitchell Andrus
03-19-2010, 10:22 AM
NY considers cameras to generate revenue:

New York Governor David A. Paterson (D) is joining a number of other states in promoting the use of freeway speed cameras as a way to address his state's massive $7.4 billion budget shortfall. Paterson's budget proposal, released yesterday, includes a plan to deploy fifty photo radar vans to generate $96 million in net profit for the general fund by 2012. "The mistakes of the past -- squandering surpluses, papering over deficits, relying on irresponsible fiscal gimmicks to finance unsustainable spending increases -- have led us to a financial breaking point," Paterson wrote. "There are no more easy answers.... The only way we can emerge from this crisis is through shared sacrifice." Paterson's budget describes the use of speed cameras on freeways as a "revenue action".....

Not for concern for safety? Lowering the speed limit promotes safety and costs nothing, oh.... but generates less revenue.

I know, obey the law and it costs you nothing... but when the state HOPES you break the law to cover a budget shortfall, that I have a problem with. It's a short step from that to encouraging you to break the law. It's even easier to LIE that you broke the law.

I opt for a cop in a car over this crap any day.
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Mike Cruz
03-19-2010, 10:27 AM
I have to admit, I have two major pet peevs. One is speeders and the other is people that don't actually stop at stop signs/right turn on red.

There is a VERY good reason for both. In my opinion, both should be penalized harshly.

Driving is a privilage. Not a right. Laws are established to make driving on the roads safe (or at least safe as possible) for everyone. When speed limits aren't obeyed, and stope signs are run, the dangers increase dramatically.

I live on a 35 mph road with hills and blind curves with lots of driveways and the average speed is about 45. We have had the police out to try to stop the insanity. One kid was stopped going 71 mph, with his child in the back seat!

Sorry, I don't think a $90 is stiff enough... JMO

Belinda Williamson
03-19-2010, 11:08 AM
NY considers cameras to generate revenue:

New York Governor David A. Paterson (D) is joining a number of other states in promoting the use of freeway speed cameras as a way to address his state's massive $7.4 billion budget shortfall. Paterson's budget proposal, released yesterday, includes a plan to deploy fifty photo radar vans to generate $96 million in net profit for the general fund by 2012. "The mistakes of the past -- squandering surpluses, papering over deficits, relying on irresponsible fiscal gimmicks to finance unsustainable spending increases -- have led us to a financial breaking point," Paterson wrote. "There are no more easy answers.... The only way we can emerge from this crisis is through shared sacrifice." Paterson's budget describes the use of speed cameras on freeways as a "revenue action".....
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To look at this another way Mitchell, a cop in a car costs the state far more than a photo radar van. It is a "revenue action" with respect to the fact that the speeders caught by the van would not have been caught otherwise due to the state's inability to put enough cops on the road. Photo vans save the state money, and generate revenue. This doesn't make the photo tickets solely a method of generating revenue - legal revenue mind you - but also a method of penalizing aggressive speeders in hopes that they will slow down.

I travel frequently through a very small town that is a true speed trap. If you are going clocked at 36 in a 35, you get a ticket. If you are clocked going 30 in that same 35 zone you get a ticket.

Mitchell Andrus
03-19-2010, 11:38 AM
To look at this another way Mitchell, a cop in a car costs the state far more than a photo radar van. It is a "revenue action" with respect to the fact that the speeders caught by the van would not have been caught otherwise due to the state's inability to put enough cops on the road. Photo vans save the state money, and generate revenue. This doesn't make the photo tickets solely a method of generating revenue - legal revenue mind you - but also a method of penalizing aggressive speeders in hopes that they will slow down.

I travel frequently through a very small town that is a true speed trap. If you are going clocked at 36 in a 35, you get a ticket. If you are clocked going 30 in that same 35 zone you get a ticket.

I'm all for stopping speeders and fining them. I'll pay the $90.00 and I'll slow down - no problem.

This program has a built-in financial incentive to allow speeders to continue to speed. It's just wrong to say that people are going to endanger lives anyway, might as well make money on them.


An item not yet discussed here: a cop stopping a speeder has the opportunity to catch DUIs, unsafe vehicles, unlicensed drivers, uninsured drivers..... Cameras let these people go right on by. Will there come a time when no police are given traffic duty because the cams are more revenue-positive?

I can't imagine why the police unions aren't screaming about this.


Interesting discussion, but I'm about done.
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Pat Germain
03-19-2010, 11:52 AM
Amen, Ken. There is no difference in getting a photo ticket than having a policemen pull you over for the same offense at the same location. .........get it changed or obey it.

There is a legal difference. When California first started using ticket cameras, the system was developed, maintained and administrated by Lockheed Martin Corporation. Lockheed also took a percentage of each fine as their fee.

One of the first people photographed and ticketed challenged it in court. The judge ruled Lockheed Martin Corporation had no authority to ticket drivers in the state. The whole program was shot in the head.

Apparently, communities found a way around this legal issue because they are now doing the same thing with other contractors.

What frustrates me is my town devotes a very large percentage of the police force to speed traps. Yes, I agree if I don't speed I don't have to worry about it. The problem is the city is willing dedicate these resources because it generates revenue. If I call the police to report stolen property or an accident on anything other than a public road, there is no police response. I'm told to go to the station and file a report on my own. Furthermore, we have a very high number of unsolved murders because the police have limited resources. Thus, our police department is primarily a means to generate revenue.

Ken Fitzgerald
03-19-2010, 12:26 PM
So Mitch....pony up.....Were you speeding?

Mitchell Andrus
03-19-2010, 1:18 PM
So Mitch....pony up.....Were you speeding?

I haven't gotten a speeding ticket since Sept. 1993 when I was running late for a radiation treatment - makes it easy to remember. I'm not a lead-foot.

Was I speeding here? Maybe. I recognize the spot the photos were taken and it's just off of a highway off-ramp, so .... probably. I don't remember - and that's part of my point.


Lets do this little scenario:

You get a call from your mom. She received a $90.00 fine in the mail from a company many states away. It says its for shoplifting. The company that gets $40.00 from every fine they collect says she's being fined because a tag detector was triggered as she left a store 3 weeks ago. The only evidence of her violation is the companies' word and photos of her leaving the store and driving away. No guards, no alarm bells. No ability to empty her purse.

If she fights it in court and loses, the fine is converted to a felony.

She was at the store, the photos are of her, but she didn't buy or steal anything.

Anyone gonna tell your mom, sister, wife to pay the fine and shut up about it?
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David Prince
03-19-2010, 1:32 PM
What frustrates me is my town devotes a very large percentage of the police force to speed traps. Yes, I agree if I don't speed I don't have to worry about it. The problem is the city is willing dedicate these resources because it generates revenue. If I call the police to report stolen property or an accident on anything other than a public road, there is no police response. I'm told to go to the station and file a report on my own. Furthermore, we have a very high number of unsolved murders because the police have limited resources. Thus, our police department is primarily a means to generate revenue.

Do the math: Figure out how many tickets a police officer would have to write to generate a positive revenue. Keep in mind that each agency has to divide that ticket revenue with court, state, and county surcharges. Then minus what is left when you take out the cost of having the officer and vehicle out there writing the ticket and then doing a report for each violation. I kinda think it is physically impossible!:confused:

Robert McGowen
03-19-2010, 1:59 PM
Furthermore, we have a very high number of unsolved murders because the police have limited resources. Thus, our police department is primarily a means to generate revenue.

Under this scenario, it would appear that the more tickets that were written, the more revenue would be generated, and the murders would then get solved due to having more resources. :confused:

As a side note, I retired from the cop business with almost 29 years, so I have some idea what I am talking about. The officers where I worked get a minimum of 4 hours O.T. just to walk in the door, whether they went to trial or not. For me that was over $275 pay JUST TO WALK IN THE DOOR. It was unusual to be there more than 30 minutes. I also got paid when I was writing the ticket. The city paid for the patrol car, the prosecutors, the judge, the clerks, and the court costs. Even if every single person that went to court was found guilty and fined $500, the city would still lose a ton of money. I can see where the cameras would be about the only way to actually MAKE money on a violation. I agree, it would totally suck to get a ticket in the mail, especially with a wife and three children driving cars that are registered to me, since the ticket would come to me. I guess it boils down to not violating the driving laws and you don't have anything to worry about. YMMV :cool:

Mitchell Andrus
03-19-2010, 2:53 PM
I guess it boils down to not violating the driving laws and you don't have anything to worry about. YMMV :cool:

Yes, you do. Read this (900 tickets voided)...

http://manly-daily.whereilive.com.au/news/story/spped-fines-refund-after-faulty-camera-find1/

More (watch the news reports at the bottom):

http://photoradarscam.com/malfunctions.php

At least when confronted by a cop, I'm likely to know whether I'm guilty or not.
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Ken Fitzgerald
03-19-2010, 3:26 PM
Mitch,

If you PROBABLY speeding.....pay the fine.


There are a lot of things in life that are important....this ain't one of them in my book.

Robert McGowen
03-19-2010, 3:26 PM
At least when confronted by a cop, I'm likely to know whether I'm guilty or not.


I will have to agree with you on that. Just from being on the other side of the radar gun though, I can tell you that it is just as easy to make a mistake in person, as it is for the camera to make a mistake.

The problem I have is that even if people get stopped in person, it would appear from everyone's collective posts that they believe that the cop is not telling the truth, that the judge is bought off, that the city council is just out for the cash from non-residents, and all the local people are just speeding along and won't get fined. I guess I just have more faith in people than others seem to.

Mike Conley
03-19-2010, 5:01 PM
How strict are they about the speed limit with these camera?

If you are only going a couple miles over do you still get a ticket?

Tim Morton
03-19-2010, 5:22 PM
MIni Cooper still owns my car....i send them payments every month...i would send them the ticket to pay...they own the car:cool:

Myk Rian
03-19-2010, 5:53 PM
Knew a guy who got one of those in Germany years ago. He had rented a 911 and had made the mistaken assumption that all autobahns were unlimited speed.
That's why they have those little white w/black numbers signs next to the left lane, in urban areas.

Chris Padilla
03-19-2010, 7:02 PM
MIni Cooper still owns my car....i send them payments every month...i would send them the ticket to pay...they own the car:cool:

I wish that trick worked for my house and property taxes.... ;)

Brian Ashton
03-20-2010, 2:35 AM
Google 'speed camera errors' to see more examples of how a cop in person might have seen the error and saved the motorist the trouble.
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Google corrupt cops and you'll probably get more per capital hits than speed cameras having false positives... It's a never ending cycle. Get used to them they're not going away or at least learn to adapt and not get caught.

Bryan Morgan
03-20-2010, 11:33 PM
I think I have the same disease. Just this morning I had to brake hard to avoid an accident by not one but two drivers that had to pass me to get one car farther ahead at a traffic light in their mad dash to get to a job they really don't like. We were all going about 50 and I had not over three car lengths to the car in front of me. Last night I watched several cars avoid an almost accident caused by a guy that was yakking on his cell phone and checking papers in his brief case. Everyday, I nearly get hit by drivers coming up on ramps that fail to yield because they assume the people coming up the road can and will pull over to let them on. More and more, I find that I'm driving at the speed limit because I've learned I don't have to beat everyone else to the light, to work or the next off ramp.

I know what you mean. I just want to get from point A to point B. If I'm early, late, who cares. As long as I get there. I drive a V8 American car that is kind of fixed up. Sure I can race it around (and I do when I'm actually on roads by myself). Some people drive like its always a contest or a war or something. I stopped caring really. Tailgate all you want, when you hit me you're going to pay.

Speed limits? I used to think they were about safety but now I think they are all about extracting money from people. That is why they aren't even crimes (unless you are driving really fast). I just drive whatever I'm comfortable with. Theres a road by work that has the speed limit of 50mph but I regularly drive around 40 (my car is slightly lowered) because the road is in major need of repair. Sure people hate it and tailgate or whatever but I don't care. Tear up your own cars, I'm not going to ruin mine for their impatience. The older I get the more I worry about what makes me happy and less about other people. :) I don't go out of my way to bother anyone and really just tend to ignore everybody. No matter where you go theres going to be jerks. Sure I'd like to take a bat to their skulls but they won't stop being jerks and I'd just get arrested. Easier to just ignore them.

Christopher Pine
03-21-2010, 12:01 AM
The police in Ontario have a new tool! A cruiser can sit on the side of the road, and scan license plates at 2000 per hour (they say their only scanning 1500 per hour right now) Sooooo if you wait a few days after your plate sticker expires to get it renewed (like I do every year :rolleyes:, I wait till the Saturday after my birthday unless it falls on a Saturday just because of convenience:) ) Yer gonna get a fine if you drive by one of these cop-scanners! But on the bright side, it's also checking for stolen cars, expired drivers licenses.. etc.. Pretty soon, yer not going to get away with anything..

Lets put another spin on this. If you are in teh country illegaly chances are you will not have to pay any of this or have insurance or .....

Lee Ludden
03-21-2010, 1:43 AM
I figure these cameras have saved the transportation company I work for a ton of money. Drivers are caught speeding, they get written up. After a few tickets they are let go. If they ran a red light, they basically have one foot out the door. Getting rid of the drivers with unsafe habits prevents helps reduce the chance of a serious injury accident. I would actually prefer that they raise the bar on these camera tickets and make it more like a regular ticket. Might get some idiots off the road.

Mitchell Andrus
03-21-2010, 8:54 AM
I figure these cameras have saved the transportation company I work for a ton of money. Drivers are caught speeding, they get written up. After a few tickets they are let go. If they ran a red light, they basically have one foot out the door. Getting rid of the drivers with unsafe habits prevents helps reduce the chance of a serious injury accident. I would actually prefer that they raise the bar on these camera tickets and make it more like a regular ticket. Might get some idiots off the road.

That's one of the best arguments I've heard yet.

But, there very cheap GPS units that can be installed that record a vehicle's position and speed ALL of the time, not just at camera sites, and computer programs that compare the data to a database of roads and their posted speed limits. THIS will slow fleet drivers down.
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Scott Shepherd
03-21-2010, 9:43 AM
Without getting into the debate about right or wrong, I recall hearing some news stories recently about those systems. They said that some places were removing them, not because they did or did not work, but because some crazy figure like 90% of all the revenue went to the company that installed the cameras. So the net impact on the cities is that they are actually taking in LESS revenue from violations, which is hurting their bottom line in this economy. So to get their revenue back up, they are removing the systems and going back to writing tickets and policing the way they used to.

Mitchell Andrus
03-21-2010, 10:12 AM
Without getting into the debate about right or wrong, I recall hearing some news stories recently about those systems. They said that some places were removing them, not because they did or did not work, but because some crazy figure like 90% of all the revenue went to the company that installed the cameras. So the net impact on the cities is that they are actually taking in LESS revenue from violations, which is hurting their bottom line in this economy. So to get their revenue back up, they are removing the systems and going back to writing tickets and policing the way they used to.

From MSNBC:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23710970/

By Alex Johnson
Reporter
msnbc.com

updated 2:12 a.m. ET, Fri., March. 21, 2008

Last week, Dallas officials reviewed the numbers and decided that a quarter of the cameras they had installed to catch motorists running red lights were too effective. So they shut them down.


They are not alone. Faced with data showing that drivers pay attention to cameras at intersections — resulting in fewer ticketable violations and ever-shrinking revenue from fines — municipalities across the country are reconsidering red light cameras, which often work too well.

Officials were promised that the cameras — which take snapshots of busy intersections, capturing the license plates of any cars that are running the light — would simultaneously save lives and generate millions of dollars in extra fines......

Rear-end collisions, in fact, have been cited in numerous reports and lawsuits questioning the benefits of red light cameras. Opponents claim that the cameras actually create more hazardous conditions.“When people know there’s a red light camera, they change their driving behavior, and they slam on their brakes trying to avoid a ticket,” said Tom McCarey, an activist for the National Motorists Association.
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Scott Shepherd
03-21-2010, 11:45 AM
Just in some quick searching for info on this topic, it's got some very interesting dynamics behind it. There are lawsuits being filed in many states saying they are unconstitutional. Apparently they say that because in a court of law, the state must prove your guilt. However, with these systems, the person is forced to prove their innocence, which is unconstitutional.

I don't know enough about it all to even have an opinion, but it's certainly quite interesting from a history/legal standpoint (at least it's interesting to me!).

Mitchell Andrus
03-21-2010, 12:47 PM
...but it's certainly quite interesting from a history/legal standpoint (at least it's interesting to me!).

Me too.

An older couple was ticketed for driving their car through a red light. They own a pick-up truck. They made it on the evening news when they beat the fine. The for-profit company guessed a digit on their plate and missed. If they simply paid it another scoff-law paid the price for breaking the law, right? Shameful.

False positives cost innocent people real money. Proving a false positive stands our most basic of laws on it's head.
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Jake Helmboldt
03-22-2010, 10:10 PM
I guess I don't get it when people purposefully go out of their way to break the law and feel the need to brag about how they got away with it. :(

Yeah, seeing as how angle collisions are the deadliest, often for the vehicle (or pedestrian, or bicyclist) being hit.

Brian Elfert
03-24-2010, 10:08 AM
I go through an indian reservation every year on a trip. The website for the event I am headed to has a big warning about not exceeding the speed limit through town. Apparently the indian reservation police have zero tolerance for speed limit violations and the money raised covers much of the town budget.

I have a GPS speedometer in my motorhome and I make darned sure not to go even 1 MPH over the limit.