Virginia’s Automated Revenue Collectors

60
6561
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Speed cameras are like kudzu – they have to be beaten back every so often.

If, that is, the public has any idea they are about to get mulcted by them.

With almost no notice and even less media coverage, Virginia is on the verge of erecting these automated revenue collectors on its highways. Two companion bills (509 and 917) have already passed the General Assembly and now await the signature of Governor “Coonman” Northam.

Virtually no one seems to be aware of it.

The main instigator behind the pending legislation is a former in-person revenue collector by the name of Bill Carrico, who is a state senator now but was formerly an armed government worker.

That is to say, a guy who spent his days hiding in roadside cutouts pointing a radar gun at passing cars, then chasing them down to issue extortion notes at gunpoint called “tickets” – ostensibly as punishment for the victimless crime of driving faster than an arbitrarily decreed maximum velocity.

The fact that nearly every car on every road is “speeding”  at any given time  – including cars driven by armed government workers current and former, such as Carrico – is pretty persuasive evidence that these arbitrary velocity limits are absurd – except insofar as the pretext they provide for . . . revenue collection.

Well, to collect revenue from us.

Armed government workers such as Carrico are exempted as a practical matter, in the same manner that a group of crocodiles lurking around a watering hole awaiting a thirsty – and unwary – antelope – generally refrain from snapping at one another.

At any rate, Carrico and co. have pushed through legislation to authorize the automation of revenue collecting.

As well as its privatizing.

For profit.

That profit to be split between the state and a cretinous contractor which styles itself Verra Mobility – formerly American Traffic Solutions. Both names conjuring everything except what they are all about – i.e., the fleecing of the public for private gain, under color of law.

This latter italicized to make the point about laws being used to generate income for private, for-profit companies.

This should raise questions. It ought to enrage.

It incentivizes punishment, after all. It also discourages the solving of the alleged problem – i.e., people driving “too fast” – because if that were to happen, the cash spigot would dry up.

It is in the financial interests, in other words of both ATS/Verra Mobility and the state of Virginia, that people continue to “speed” – as many of them as possible.

Certainly, ATS/Verra Mobility would not have invested all that money in the camera equipment – and politicians like Carrico, who received campaign cash from ATS/Verra Mobility – if the plan was to reduce the incidence of “speeding” and thus the revenue stream.

Do you suppose the “donation” to Carrico was merely a friendly gesture? What was it Hannibal Lector said to Agent Starling?

Quid pro quo, Clarice.

Indeed.

No one gives something for nothing – at least not when it comes to campaign cash. And we can put a number on just exactly what ATS/Verra and the state of Virginia expect to reap (to filch) in return for their “donation” to Carrico :

Virginia’s cut amounts to a projected $37 million “each budget cycle” – that sum to be glad-handed directly to Carrico’s AGW colleagues in the Virginia State Police. The better to Hut! Hut! Hut! us, you see.

Body armor, agonizers (Tasers) and MRAPs don’t come cheap.

ATS/Verra Mobility will pocket the unspecified rest. Virginia’s mulcted will likely never be allowed to know the full extent of it. The mountain of mulcted money will pile up $125 at a time – the cost of each individual piece of payin’ paper.

It gives you an idea of the magnitude of the outrage – as well as the outrageousness of Virginia’s speed laws.

Especially those posted in so-called “work” zones – which the legislation specifically addresses.

Those not familiar with this con – which is applied in many other states, among them California – will initially consider it reasonable. Like the “Patriot” Act, for instance. Who could oppose that?

After all, we don’t want those poor road workers mowed down by hard-charging “speeders,” do we?

The reality is that it’s often the case there is no work actually occurring in these zones – which can stretch for miles. And no workers, either.

What happens is the normal speed limit – already in most cases well below 85th percentile speeds and thus almost every car is technically “speeding” as things are – suddenly, arbitrarily goes down by another 10 MPH for the  length of the “work” zone, and for no obvious reason.

Now everyone is “speeding” – and ripe for revenue collecting. And they’ll never know what hit them until the bill shows up in the mail. Pay up, chump.

The good news is, it’s not yet the law. “Coonman” has to sign the bill and possibly may not – if the public gets wind enough in time enough.

Everyone not fully Cloverized realizes this is about money – not saaaaaaaafety. And that if the law is signed and imposed, the danger is not merely those $125 per pieces of automated payin’ paper.

If the precedent is set, then Virginia – and the hyena pack of private cash-grabby contractors who use the government to mulct the public – will surely expand the use of cameras to encompass other “revenue opportunities.” Jaywalking, red lights – stop signs – you name it.

Every click of the shutter another ka-ching! of the cash register.

Ergo this column. Now you know what’s afoot. There is still time. Let “Coonman” know how you feel about policing for profit.

Before that piece of payin’ paper shows up in your mailbox.

And if that doesn’t do it, it may be time  for us sans culottes to put on Yellow Vests.

. . .

Got a question about cars – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!

If you like what you’ve found here please consider supporting EPautos. 

We depend on you to keep the wheels turning! 

Our donate button is here.

 If you prefer not to use PayPal, our mailing address is:

EPautos
721 Hummingbird Lane SE
Copper Hill, VA 24079

PS: Get an EPautos magnet (pictured below) in return for a $20 or more one-time donation or a $5 or more monthly recurring donation. (Please be sure to tell us you want a sticker – and also, provide an address, so we know where to mail the thing!)

My latest eBook is also available for your favorite price – free! Click here.  

 

 

Share Button

60 COMMENTS

  1. I passed through VA back in 2017. I was appalled at how low the speed limits were on Virginia interstates. They were much lower than those in TN or PA. Everyone on the road was speeding, many going 20+ mph over the speed limit despite earning signs that proclaimed that “speed enforced by helicopter” or radar. I also experienced those “higher fines in work areas” that had no workers or equipment on sight. I can’t imagine living under this tyranny, or travelling on their roadways again. Especially if this latest totalitarian edict passed.

  2. Here in the Dallas-Fort Worth area (and maybe all of Texas, I don’t know for sure) a red-light ticket is not a criminal offense, it is a civil offense, which means you will have to be sued for collection, you cannot be arrested. In other words you don’t have to pay it, and the most that can happen is it can be listed on your credit rating. It probably doesn’t effect your rating much if any. I guess if you had several thousand dollars worth of red-light tickets from the same municipality they might consider it worth their while to sue you, but I doubt they would want to waste the time. Oh yeah, the gubment will also list scofflaw on the top of your car registration notice (I consider it a badge of honor.) Grocery stores that will sell you your registration sticker will deny selling you one if scofflaw is listed, but the state/county will still sell it to you, because they are not about to turn down money just because the city has a problem with you.
    I have never received a speeding ticket other than from a live AGW.

  3. “It incentivizes punishment, after all. It also discourages the solving of the alleged problem – i.e., people driving “too fast” – because if that were to happen, the cash spigot would dry up.”

    Sounds a lot like the tobacco tax.

  4. While everyone was busy working to pay the 50% tax load extracted from all working people, the shills at FCC have steamrolled 5G. In se Fl I-75 and many other major highways all have 5G cells installed. Once turned on this will be a global control net. Exactly as “Sky NET” in the Terminator films. With 22,000 earth orbiting satellites, your connected car and cell phone will provide all the evidence anytime you violate any traffic law. Change lanes without signaling, the car will know and will notify “SKY NET” you will suffer a hit.

    Soon ALL new sold vehicles will have electric steering. This is for self driving. Soon if you wish to use a certain highway you will be required to submit control at the on ramp. Refuse your car will be disabled and you will suffer the consequences. We all must destroy this equipment wherever installed and do whatever it takes to push back.

    Charger John

  5. While I agree with your premise, this article is not factually correct. I am not trying to defend anyone – I just want the facts to be correct. I stand to be corrected.

    * The bills cited in this article are not even 2019 legislation. Four bills introduced in the 2018 session are all dead (HB1021, SB509, SB678, and SB917).
    * There IS a bill passed by both houses in the VA General Assembly in 2019 and on the Governor’s desk – SB1521 (Patron – Carrico) that would allow hand-held devices used by the VSP who must be physically present and only in work zones with actual workers on site and only above 12 miles over the speed limit. Interestingly, the fiscal impact statement indicates that the state could face losing federal highway funds in excess of $28M if this law is enacted. This is because these would be civil fines and not reported to DMV. Apparently, to keep federal highway funds flowing, the state must report traffic violations to DMV for CDL drivers and drivers with learner’s permits. Hard to believe that 30 of the 40 state senators voted yes and 74 of 100 state delegates voted yes in spite of this warning.
    * I checked VPAP for donations from Verra Mobility and found none in any year to any legislator.
    * Donations from American Traffic Solutions total $14,00 over all years with $2,000 going to Senator Chase (12/31/18) and $1,000 to Carrico (5/15/16).

  6. cameras…ick

    a few weeks ago i was buying drill bits at home depot and noticed a camera watching me. it was right at the six foot height so i walked out of the aisle and asked the guy at paint for a small piece of masking tape and went back and reached around to cover their creepy camera.

  7. california checking in…

    years ago a friend got a red light run tikkie in my truck. his pic was clearly him, not me. when i went down to advise they had sent their ticket to the wrong party, i had not run the light, they advised i was required to identify the driver. when i told her i couldn’t positively do that based on their grainy pic. well of course the fat bitch behind the bullet proof glass at the sheriff station got her giant drawers in wad (a giant wad). she repeated that i was obligated to do so. rather than let her drive the conversation i LAUGHED OUT LOUD and let her know the picture was not me and it was not MY job to do THEIR investigating. she persisted and i told her i needed someone with authority to delete the ticket. you would have thought i called her mother a whore but she did go get a higher up who promptly instructed her to void it w/o comment. it was my pleasure to FORCE HER TO MARK THE “COURTESY NOTICE TO PAY” AS VOIDED AND WHEN SHE DID I SLID IT RIGHT BACK THROUGH THE LITTLE SLOT AT THE BOTTOM AND TOLD HER TO SIGN AND DATE IT. SHE RESISTED BUT I LET HER KNOW THE COMMANDING OFFICER WOULD PROBABLY BE GLAD TO DO HER JOB SHE SNORTED AND SIGNED AND DATED IT.

    i have a small fan paddle from a local brewery with two eyeholes cut into it that i hold up when crossing the known red light traps in my burg. one can also drop the visor and hike up in the seat to take the face out of the picture…

    the problem with such cites is the inability to confront the witness and i suspect that ALL command officers have been advised to roll over for those of us who are likely to take the bogus cites to trial…can’t have it get out that they are unenforceable

    • I wish I knew about the face cover 8 years ago when I was returning a rental car to LAX at 5:30am. I made a right on a red light (with no cars in sight for miles) and received a $500 ticket via Hertz and the State of California. Rather than paying for a return flight to the People’s Republic, I paid the darn thing.

    • I’d just take a cue from those caper movies where the gang wear these rubber heads. One had the guys wearing masks made of recent Presidents. Another, a fave of mine as it featured a slew of then young hotties, was “Sugar and Spice”, an otherwise forgettable flick where a group of cheerleaders raise funds to help out on their own who’s about to become a teenaged mom. They all wear identical masks and these prosthetic pregnant bellies to mask which one is for real.

      Me? I’ll find a “Master Yoda” rubber head and drive around with that. Give the system the “Finger”, I can, Hummph?

  8. Sooon,,, the parasites will pass a law allowing your car to rat on you. Exceed the speed limit,,, reckless driving,,, improper lane change,,, passing on a solid yellow,,, etc your ‘smart’ car will turn you in. Then if the Armed Government Wusses think you dangerous enough one simple code sent to ‘your’ car will prevent it from being started.

    Yes,,, it’s coming…… trust me!

    • the beauty of an older truck or car…my ’94 f150 has a computer that my wizard mechanic fixed with a 25 cent diode or resistor or something…

      but…the current generation will not have a problem with their car ratting them out as long as it syncs with their phone. fucking retards..

    • That’s already happened. I read an article over the weekend where a woman got into a hit & run accident; she hit someone and left the scene. She had a newer Ford, and her car ratted her out.

    • Along with that, they’ll come up with a per mile scheme, to turn all the highways into toll roads. Older vehicles will likely have to have something retrofitted to be registered.

      It won’t even necessarily require AGWs…just post something that the PTB don’t like, and you may find that your car won’t start, your Internet Access is cut off, and the “kindly” overseers haul you off to a “Re-Education” camp to get you to see the “error of your ways”.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=olveBOhevu0

  9. I’ve seen plenty of photos of such cameras beaten and burned to death in Britain. Glad to know the French are maintaining their rebelliousness. We need our own Gilets jaunes movement here in America, that is, if enough slobs can get their fat oversized buttocks off the couch, away from the “big game” and actually think for themselves for once in their rancid lives.
    America is headed towards oblivion and using these cameras for revenue enhancement is indicative of the massive spending/debt that states have created for themselves. The worst being in the realm of pensions that are either now being payed out and those in the future which is dragging cities and states into a massive hole and bankruptcy.
    California has a massive future pension deficit of $153 billion and four cities in that state have filed bankruptcy.
    Only seventeen or eighteen states have decent credit ratings, the rest are in massive debt and growing worse which means the people living in those states each have massive debt/tax bills that need covering.
    As the America flails around the world from one military and humanitarian disaster after another, wasting trillions wasted in places like Iraq, and nothing gained except the wealth of private contractors , in which thievery is the norm, and a bloated military budget: planes that can’t fly and Littoral combat ships that fall apart at sea, the massive welfare/warfare state will continue to heap more massive debt onto Americans and no matter how much easy cash flows from the Fed, a crisis is looming ahead in the headlights. It will make what happened in 2008 look like a minor market adjustment.

    • Another British tactic for rural cameras is to sneak up on them from behind and turn them so they’re facing away from the road. Covering the camera lens with a thick coating of mud (or better still a cow pie) is another fun thing to do.

      Really — they have cameras on roads that barely see a dozen cars a day… I am so glad I decamped to the other side of the pond. I just wish the same creeping totalitarianism wasn’t being imported.

      • Remember, this is the same country that was going through 8-month-old camera footage, saw someone powerslide a couple of loops in a roundabout in the middle of the night, tracked him down, hauled him off to court, took his license (in the process hosing him out of his employment), and told him he was lucky to avoid jail – over something he himself probably barely remembered by then. Not surprised they’d have cameras on roads no one ever even uses.

  10. Don’t know if you were aware of this, but American Traffic Solutions, Inc. is the defendant in a proposed class action lawsuit filed in Florida federal court. The plaintiff, a Palm Beach County resident, claims the traffic camera installation company—who the suit says processes more than one million violations every year—has stolen from consumers “millions upon millions” in unlawful commissions and surcharges disguised as “convenience fees.”

    https://www.classaction.org/news/american-traffic-solutions-has-stolen-millions-in-convenience-fees-from-fl-drivers-class-action-suit-alleges

  11. They had these speed cameras in Hawaii for about a year. Until one lawyer challenged in court the law’s presumption that the registered owner of the vehicle was the driver at the time of the incident, with zero proof required that that was the case.

    The judge started throwing out the speeding bills en masse, and then the law was repealed as unconstitutional.

      • That clause was in the Hawaii law. It was one of several unconstitutional provisions that got the law tossed out soon as some non-brain-dead lawyer challenged it in court.

  12. Here’s a non-violent way to mess with them.

    If three or four people got together and drove side-by-side AT THE SPEED LIMIT while driving the interstates around the Virginia suburbs of Rome on the Potomac during rush hours they would get the message.

    Can you imagine the snarled traffic backed up for miles and it would take hours to sort it all out. Just because a few folks decided to “obey”?

  13. Remember this issue is about revenue enhancement for the Fourth Reich, not about safety or speed limits. Nobody has been able to show a significant correlation between speed limits and traffic accidents. IQ yes, speed no.
    This kind of government theft is a reflection of the deal struck just after they killed JFK between liberals and the Fascists in business and government: “We will not criticize your business practices (in our media) if you do not legislate against our immoral sexual proclivities”.
    The result is more money for the Praetorian State and more for the Money Changers. The former gets the fines and the latter charges usury. Nobody admits the scandal, all enrichen themselves. We perish.
    In the meantime, more people died from Opiates than died from vehicle accidents last year. Since there is no financial fee for drug abuse, Crickets.

  14. Here’s the question: If Virginia installs the ticket cams, will cop cars exceeding the limit without lights and siren get busted???

    It’s just as illegal for THEM to speed as it is for US — UNLESS they’re responding to a bona fide call. Of course, we ALL know the cops speed all the time when they don’t have lights and siren on.

    Now… OF COURSE the cops are going to get caught on the speed cams. All. The. Time. But the cameras, being machines, won’t give the “professional courtesy” to cops that they give each other. (OFF -DUTY cops getting tickets on speedcam will be VERY interesting…)

    So, OF COURSE the State will have an extralegal, informal policy of waiving the cop tickets, while putting the screws to us “deplorables.” (Were I busted by such a camera, what I’d do in court is subpoena the records of the speedcam tickets that get waived, and move to have the ticket dismissed on 14th Amendment Equal protection grounds).

    BTW, Eric… how often have you seen a Virginia Trooper doing 80 — which is a CRIME in Virginia — without his lights on?

    • Amen, X –

      And I have personally witnessed state troopers “reckless” driving – anything faster than 80 is defined as such by Virginia law, even on highways with 70 MPH speed limits – on countless occasions. AGWs “speed” routinely – because they can do so with impunity.

      • Here in Schenectady NY I’ve seen AGWs turn on their siren/lights so they can make a U-turn at a red light and then immediately turn them back off (in addition to their reckless speeding) once having made said “illegal for the rest of us” u-turn

      • It’s bad enough that they do so while on duty, in taxpayer-funded vehicles, without cause to do so. They also do it while OFF-duty, since there’s the unspoken yet real expectation (just like no policing agency has ticket, quotas, riiiiight….) that cops don’t ticket other cops.

        But if it were only that being an AGW was the proverbial “ticket to ride”. Even though there’s ample evidence that domestic abuse is far higher among AGWs than we ‘Mundanes’, so often so many are not arrested and taken straight to jail, to not pass “go” or “collect $200”, like you and/or I would be if (even falsely, but that’s for another thread) if thus accused.

  15. Welcome to the world of speed cameras, they are everywhere in New Zealand and you will find, just as in NZ they will be located where drivers are most likely to exceed the speed limit, on a downhill stretch of road or where the speed limit reduces to a lower limit. Maybe even on passing lanes, exceeding the speed limit when overtaking is strictly forbidden in NZ.

    • Hi Mark,

      Indeed. The French finally had enough – and so should we.

      As it happens, just today, I was on my way home and driving 68 in a 55 – a speed well within my capacities to handle safely. The speed limit (if we accept the idea that such things are legitimate at all) should be at least 65, if set according to the 85th percentile rule. Anyhow, around the bend, an AGW.

      I didn’t hesitate.

      Before the bastard could pull out after me, I was out of visual range – and within a few moments, out of his reach entirely.

      Been feeling great all day! 🙂

      • Nice. I blew by one years ago and being young and doing the right thing i pulled over and waited for my ticket. When those blue lights finally came into range it cost me dearly – and thats even after he dropped my speed by 40mph for “doing the right thing”.

        • Hi Bin,

          You learned a valuable lesson. It is the wrong thing to stop – if you stand a good chance of getting away. For the same reason that it’s the right thing to try to get away from a mugger. It’s the same thing, only one type of mugging is done under the color of law.

          • I had six blissful years rom 80 to 86 using my Escort to not get caught. Once “instant-on” hit the scene I was sometimes forced to stand on it and leave the ossifer behind. They had really slow cars then and I had a really fast one.

          • Eric,

            The only thing about going for it is you’d better be 100% sure you can leave the AGW in the dust; you’d better get away, because you’ve already ramped up whatever punishment you’d have gotten if you hadn’t. I’ve seen videos of what AGWs do when they catch people trying to flee from them, and they don’t have a sense of humor about it.

      • I-5 in Southern California has a sretch, four lanes each way, that crosses Camp Pendleton Marine base, about 15 miles of rifle-shot straight road no ramps. Traffic in those days tyicaly moved at about 65, thorugh posted at 55. SHould be ninety…. good grief. Fine afternoon, fairly heavy traffic but still moving well, I was blasting along at 85 in a plain jane white sedan, working the gaps but giving folks plenty of space, certainly not driving aggressively. Sharp eye in the glass, I thought I saw a black-and-white tail way back, kept a sharp eye on him, Yup. a CHiP trying to maintain a steady speed so he could get a rolling clock on me. Watched him for a while sped up a bit.. right lane had a slowpoke, I was in second lane coming up on a big rig dryvan, third had two more big rigs, well spaced slowly overtaking lane 2’s rig, and there was anoher pickup or some such in lane four slowly overtakning the rear of the two dryvans in lane 3. I slid between the two rigs in lane 3, in front of lane 4’s pickup, passed the lead lane thre rig, slid in front of him, the lane two rig, slowpoke in the rigiht lane was well behind, noone in front of him. I braked like a madman, dove onto the 14 foot side shoulder, hit the key as I neared a stop, pulled the bonet catch, jumped out the driver’s door wiht an empty antifreeze jug, ran up front opened the bonnet and made as if I was pouring water into the radiator. I watched through the gap between the rear edge of the bonnet and the bottom of the windscreen, and saw CHiP approaching in lane 3, he saw the car and rubbernecked something fierce. but realised that , even if I WAS that guy he was eyeballing, I’d broken his rolling pace he had going, and thus had beaten him. I saw that moment of recognition/frustration as he passed, my head pointed down to the radiator fill but eyeballs square at him. K pet up mu charade until he was well ahead, then hopped back in and resumed.. this time at a leisurely 75 mph. Never did see him again. H fond myself somewht gloating at having bested him, and did not feel the least bit sorry knowing he’d been bested by a mere mundane, in an old generic small white sedan. I have often wondered hiw certain he was that I in fact WAS his mark… and that he’d been outsmarted.

        Yes, I gloated at having won that time.. but never slacked off in my vigilance OR cageyness. One of maybe half a dozen times I outrhunk a CHiP back when I travelled that state a lot. Traffic was far to o heavy for a radar to have worked… and he was tooo far back to make certain the dot was on ME as we moved along at speed. They were pretty sharp with the visual game, but counted on an ignorant and unawares public. I was neither. I resolved long before that to “not feed the bears”.

      • I really have a new found respect for the French after this…. Was really surprised to see them being the first to rise against these automated revenue collectors (especially the way here in Britain we joke about the french basically being pushovers). Honestly really expected people in the US to be the first to rebel against this sort of thing on a large scale….. Whats happened to America!!

        • I have too, and I’m American. I don’t know WHAT has happened over here. Actually, I do but I don’t like to say it: our nation has become wussified. I’d like to see Washington FLOODED with our own yellow vests, but with torches and pitchforks…

  16. What do the lawyers say about receiving the “tickets” in the mail? Are they legal summons’ or not? Consult Youtube for details.

    • Easy enough to find a lawyer to argue for whatever crap they want. Easier still to find a judge to agree, especially when they get selected by the legislature.

    • The initial letter is not a ticket, but will turn into one of not paid.
      this is how I won my case. I let it turn into a ticket. In Florida, the ticketing officer must swear that he witnessed you committing the infraction.
      when the ticket came in it was signed by some “officer” All my calls to the Sherriffs office to contact this guy were to no avail and I decided the guy really didn’t exist.
      At the initial hearing I presented the case that the ticket was invalid because 1) the officer was not on the scene in order to sweat I did this and 2) he really didn’t exist and I had the right to have him in court.

      I barely got item 2 out of mouth when the judge asked to my log of attempts to contact the officer and the responses I got. It looked t0 me like she didn’t even read it, she took it glanced at it briefly and said “case dismissed” I hadn’t got to the argument part. The prosecutor said nothing and didn’t even look to me like he was even following along.

      My takeaway is the cops and the judges know this is all BS, if you roll over they will take your money, but they do not want these cases in front of a real court.

      I had a full page list of items I was planning to demand on discovery. I never got to use it.

      • In New York, you are not entitled to discovery, if there is no criminal charge against you. Tickets where you are only at risk of a fine?… sorry.

        Been there. Made my demands for officer training certificates, calibration logs for the radar gun, etc, etc. Judge denied all the requests (not demands). Annnd… Guilty!… Next!

    • Good point. In Jersey, I got a red light ticket and in Jersey the points they attach to moving violations are the killer. If I remember correctly. $100/point for 3 years. So a $100 ticket cost now costs $1000. The cops know this and unless your stupid they typically give you a non-moving violation lesser ‘charge’.
      On my red light ticket it said ‘if you pay this now, you will not get any points, if you don’t pay yo will get x points. makes ya pay it.
      I think that red light camera is gone, I don’t know why. In fact, I haven’t seen any in a while.
      When i was a young salesman, I routinely drove 40K +/- miles a year and had lots of points, almost to the limit of 12 when you loose your license. No cop ever gave me another one to go over the limit even though I got pulled over all the time. I just considered it the cost of doing business, haha. Sad right?
      A radar detector and getting smarter helped later.

  17. The Grand Tour, the show about three old men behaving like teenagers while driving stupid-expensive cars, did a show from China this season.

    “The trio were also rather bemused at China’s modern roadway camera systems even though most major European and American roads also have similar camera systems.”

    https://eurasiafuture.com/2019/02/16/the-grand-tours-china-episode-is-a-surprising-breath-of-fresh-air/

    I can assure you after watching the episode, we most certainly DO NOT have “similar” camera systems. These cameras are on overhead gantries, much like directional and message signs, and it seems like there’s one per lane. They also have very bright LED flashes. The point isn’t to capture your license plate, but to look in behind the windshield and make sure you’re being a good citizen.

    Coming soon to a central screwtinizer near you.

    • Reality is probably not best grasped by watching a “reality” TV show. The producers and stars of that show very likely had no clue what they were seeing, and if they did, they kept their mouths shut so they could continue to be allowed to enjoy the hospitality of their communist hosts.
      China’s “social surveillance” system is pervasive, all-encompassing, and completely doable here in the USA.
      As of now, we just lack the socialist cojones to totally control every citizen at all times.
      We’re getting there, though.
      Here’s the system that those Chinese cameras noticed by the bemused reality TV stars are part of:

      “China’s Surveillance State Should Scare Everyone
      The country is perfecting a vast network of digital espionage as a means of social control—with implications for democracies worldwide.”

      https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2018/02/china-surveillance/552203/

  18. And PA seems to be going the other way. They are one of the few, maybe only NE state to raise limits to 70 on more rural interstates. Western parts of Rt80 are now 70, and recently 380 from Stroudsburg to Scranton has also gone 70. Another thing I’ve noticed is I don’t see any cops on these 70mph sections anymore. But I am being cautious at the places they go back to 65 or 55, obvious strap areas.

    Rt 80 in NJ is still 65, and most are doing 75-80. I do see cops a lot but they are almost always busy writing tickets.

    • Utah and Colorado change speed limits occasionally. Utah brought I-70 and I-15 up to 80 and Colorado raised the speed limit to 60 after rebuilding I-25 through Denver.

      Does PA still have the ridiculous penalty for getting a speeding ticket? I don’t recall all the details but I know it was way out of line punishment. $300 fine and 3 points maybe? And a second offense pretty much meant a suspended license. When I moved out to Colorado I got nailed for 35 in a 25 zone, which I think was just a revenue grab. But I also saw that it wasn’t going to be a big deal either. No points, no big dollar fine, just a hassle. And pretty easy to fight tickets too. They seem to be more interested in the revenue and in Eagle County court the clerks are able to offer a standard plea bargain that in my case got the fine down below $100 and no points. Garfield County wants you to meet with the DA, but he seemed somewhat reasonable too.

      Don’t know what system is worse. In Pennsylvania it seems like they are far less likely to pull you over but if they do they probably have a pretty good case against you. In Colorado you’ll probably be pulled over more often, but the penalty won’t be as bad. From what I’ve heard about Virginia it seems to be the worst of both. And now that there’s a blatant incentive for someone to profit from crime, you can bet they’ll be aiming for anything a gnat’s ass over the PSL.

      Better check that speedometer, especially if you’re running non-spec tires.

      • yes, PA has point system and they say they are reciprocal with NJ, although it’s been a long time since I got any tickets. My son has though traveling between Pittsburgh and NJ for school a lot. He’s gotten pulled over 5-6 times in 2 years and has only gotten one ticket and yes it had points.
        I will say some good things about some cops though, one time he was distraught over a girlfriend and was speeding home, and the cop realized he was not in good shape, and asked if he could sit with him for a while and calmed him down. My son says he thinks the cop may have saved his life (he was going very very fast).
        I called the cop a few days later after I learned of the story. He did not give my son a ticket and I offered to have my son donate the would-be ticket cost to a local charity. The cop was a very nice younger man. I thanked him for his judgement and actions.

  19. the “cowardly” French yellow vests have destroyed 6 thousand speed cameras and counting but big mouth fat gray beard blowhards are the real tough guys even tho not ONE speed camera in US destroyed yet

    • SPQR70AD,

      You make an excellent point. Sitting around complaining is a poor substitute for taking action, legal or otherwise.

      However, some US speed cameras have indeed been “involuntarily decommissioned.” Back when they were used in Az, I saw several that were totally “blinded.” In Arizona’s case, political pressure eventually caused them to be removed by the state itself. Whatever works.

  20. I got nailed by a red light camera a few years ago. A busy intersection I’d pass through on the way home from work was yellow, so I sped up to get through before it turned red. Though the light turned red as I got there, I thought I’d made it through-wrong! A week or so later, I got a letter saying I’d gotten a ticket for running a red light. The letter had a URL in it, so I could see the violation for myself. That was creepy!

    Anyway, I watched it in disbelief. Then I ran the video clip frame-by-frame to see if the light changed before I got to the stop line. It did-by 3/10th of a second! That’s not something one could notice. But yeah, in Jersey, those cameras are watching us now, and they’re creepy…

    • almost all red light camera tickets are for a fraction of a second after the light turns red. Longer yellows destroy the profitability. The cameras take advantage of a change in the MUTCD to a ‘clearance interval’ where signals must meet a total of yellow + all red. Shorten the yellow, increase the all red, profit.

  21. One thing that could derail this is it is important for everyone to challenge these tickets. Yeah, I know traffic court is a kangaroo court, but I fought one and won it. It took a lot of time out of my day and had to sit in “court” for 2 hours but I prevailed.
    My town took the cameras all down last year, the reason they gave was that the “revenue” was too low and the city wasn’t making the money they expected thus giving away the game. But part of was the large numbers of people challenging the tickets stressed the system.
    Oh, BTW I’d never, of course, advocate vandalism as I’d never suggest that anyone buying a $35 green burning laser from Banggood.com and shining at the camera lens to burn out the CCD. I’d never-ever do such a thing.

LEAVE A REPLY