CarTalk.com Best of Deals Car Reviews Repair Shops Cars A-Z Radio Show

Intense Backlash Against Arizona Speed Cameras

What do you think of this news story?



http://www…=123501023



The part that stands out to me is:



“‘For a good year after they put the cameras here, they had no fatal or serious collision calls in this part of the valley,’ he (Bart Graves) says.”



“Statistics for last year show highway fatalities dropped 25 percent statewide ? that’s 81 fewer deaths.”

Speed and red light cameras have nothing to do with safety. Automatic Ticket Machines (ATMs) are all about the money. I hope AZ votes the idiots who passed this law out of office.

Twotone

Personally, I have been hoping for better enforcement of traffic laws for a long time. I would like to be able to drive on roads where people obey the legal speed limit.

It is almost as if people think they have a God given right to constantly break the law. In my opinion, that sense of entitlement is the problem.

You could throw away the cameras and hire enough police to enforce speed laws, and if they enforced these laws this effectively, you would have just as many complaints.

Reduced accident rates can have MANY causes, like the collapsing Arizona economy and the migration of tens of thousands of people back to Mexico…

Crediting photo-radar with reduced accident rates is just self-serving propaganda…

$80 a pair “polarized” license plate protectors are BIG sellers…

That is all so true Caddyman.

Speed isn’t the problem. It’s driving stupidly at any speed that is the problem.

How have you determined that? Isn’t speeding just one of many ways to “drive stupidly?”

Caddyman, at least we can agree that speed enforcement has SOME effect on accident rates, even if it isn’t as large as some claim.

That depends. In some states, the posted speed limit on the interstate is 65 MPH. In others, for very similar interstate areas, the posted limit is 80 MPH. Are the people doing 80 in these areas driving stupidly because some other officials in another state think the 65 is as fast as anyone should ever go? Are you driving safely at 65 MPH, while I am driving stupidly at 66 MPH? Because the sign says maximum 65 MPH, is it safe to drive 65 MPH in heavy rain? Is it more important to drive 65 MPH and be two yards behind the car in front, or to drive 80 MPH, and have a few hundred yards between you and the next car? (Yes, I know that 65 with a few hundred yards is even better, but that’s not my question.)
Why is the posted limit magically safer than some other number? Yes, 65 is safer than 80, but then 25 is safer than 65. It’s all a compromise, where do you draw the line?
My argument is that speed enforcement is not about safety, it’s about money.

“Similar” does not mean the same thing as “same” or “identical,” especially when considering highways. Perhaps there are important differences between these highways you may not perceive? For example, the states that allow higher speed limits generally have flat, straight, wide open highways and low population.

Let’s not get into a debate about the motivation for enforcing the law. Even of you look at the most heinous crimes, like murder and rape, enforcement doesn’t deter crime very well, but we have a moral obligation to enforce the law nonetheless. We could go on all day about what would amount to a difference of opinion.

My main point is that the law is the law. Some laws may not make sense, but I think we have gotten far too lax in our law enforcement. Others seem to tolerate lawlessness better than I do.

My late father was a traffic engineer, and he participated in many studies that helped determine speed limits. Rarely are these numbers arbitrarily chosen.

Agree or disagree with what I said, but I still think it’s ironic that the people who are against photo enforcement in Arizona are the same “law and order” republicans who want other laws tightly enforced.

On the flip side driving too slowly can be just as dangerous. Let’s say the speed limit is 65 MPH, but in the real world the prevailing (85th percentile) speed is 80 MPH. If you have 100 cars traveling at 80 MPH and one person driving at say 55 MPH the person driving 55 MPH is creating a safety problem for the majority who are traveling at the prevailing, though illegal, speed.

Whether the hazard is being created by the legal driver or the illegal drivers is a matter of opinion. I have never been a follower. I don’t care if everyone else is driving 80 MPH. If I want to drive 65 MPH legally in a 65 MPH zone, that should be my prerogative.

This kind of reminds me of the way some Native American Indians used to hunt buffalo. Sometimes they would put on buffalo carcasses and nudge the buffalo to run off a cliff. Then they would simply clean up the mess. It also reminds me of a herd of wildebeests crossing a river and being eaten by crocodiles. The next one just follows the one before him to the slaughter because he has a herd mentality. I prefer to think of myself as the wildebeest who chooses not to cross the river because of all those who went before me and got eaten.

That doesn’t change the fact that driving well below the prevailing is inherently more dangerous than keeping up with traffic. I don’t think speed is as big a danger as people like to think it is. The Autobahn is actually one of the safest highways in the world. But the speeds are much higher than other highways as well. It has more to do with the driving skill of people who occupy the road and proper driving etiquette. I’m a hell of alot more concerned about the guy weaving in and out of heavy traffic at 60 MPH than I am with the guy who is just cruising along at 90 MPH in light traffic.

I’m a hell of alot more concerned about the guy weaving in and out of heavy traffic at 60 MPH than I am with the guy who is just cruising along at 90 MPH in light traffic.

I can agree with that. However, in real life, the guy cruising at 90 MPH rarely has the sense to slow down in heavy traffic.

USA Today, Fe. 17th “Georgia zooms in on too-slow drivers”. Proposed $75.00 fine for driving too slow in left lane. Problem is, “too-slow” means “under posted limit” and I would like to see the code that designates the left lane as a “passing lane” (not just the common perception of what the left lane is for).

Another problem is requiring drivers to drive at posted limit when perhaps some condition prohibits or prevents this (either a condition that affect everyone or just that one driver). Lots of problems with such legislation.

Some laws may not make sense

Yes, I agree. Why do we need a law that tells us we should have our headlights on if we’re using our wipers? Shouldn’t this be (un)common sense? though, I’m one of those rare people that turn their headlights on even in broad daylight. Just a habit of mine that when I start the car, my other hand reaches up and turns the headlights on.

Generally speaking, photo-radar is used on city streets where the speed limits range from 20 to 45 mph…School zones, construction zones (fines doubled) are the favorite spots. It’s not about “safety”. It’s about “Money”. The white vans with the strobe lights are really just toll booths for those who drive a little too fast…

If you pay up within the next ten days, no points will be assessed and no insurance company notification will be made… How considerate!!

If everybody’s going 5 MPH over the speed limit on an interstate, that’s one thing. But if everyone’s going 75 in the right lane and you’re going the speed limit, and you have to slow for a deer, or whatever, and the person behind you hits you, how can it be your fault?

It’s the fault of the guy behind you, and indirectly, the fault of the heard mentality of the other driver’s–pointed out by Whitey. To say that it’s the fault of the slower drivers is just a rationalization for people who want to break the law. If you’re going 70 in a 55

and you hit and kill someone–because of your excessive speed, you’re just as much a murderer as a drunken driver is. On the other thread on DUI’s, everyone was pretty unanimous in their agreement as to the stupidity of driving drunk. Excessive speeding is the same thing. Instead of getting drunk on alcohol, we’re getting intoxicated by Velocity.

How do you explain the drop in serious collisions and deaths?

just think how many cameras are out there?SCARRY!