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(Phoenix New Times)   Arizona police say drivers spotted texting will get speeding tickets even if they are below the speed limit   (blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com) divider line 99
    More: PSA, DPS, speeding tickets, Arizona Department of Public Safety, speed limits, texting, Daily Star  
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2594 clicks; posted to Main » on 13 Nov 2013 at 10:35 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-11-14 12:17:41 AM  
good.
i am sick of distracted drivers
any speed above zero is too fast if you're a forking retard trying to text while driving.
one of my best friends lost their son to a guy who was texting. danny was riding his bike with a friend, in the bicycle lane, coming home from getting his first high school class schedule.
his mom, my friend, wanted to rub danny's chest one more time, like he loved so much when he was little.
but she couldn't, because his chest was gone.
 
2013-11-14 12:18:36 AM  

The Gordie Howe Hat Trick: I drove I-40 from OKC to Albuquerque in the middle of the night while reading a book.
Think I read eight paragraphs in about six hours because the road kept distracting me.


If that's how long it took you to drive it...good god, man, you're insane.

Reading in the dark while driving 100 miles an hour for six hours straight?
Darwin called, but I guess you couldn't hear him over the clanking of your brass balls.
 
2013-11-14 12:22:04 AM  

brobinson2001: This is kinda why I almost miss my eye tumor. It pushed my eye out and to the side, so I could literally safely text and drive, because my field of vision was so wide I could see "through" my phone.

Then again, not looking like Igor anymore...win some, lose some


That's EYE-gor.
 
2013-11-14 12:32:53 AM  

Warlordtrooper: JosephFinn: karmaceutical: I don't think I've ever seen someone on their phone actually exceeding the speed limit.

If they're on the phone and driving faster than zero they're exceeding the speed limit.

The mental gymnastics one has to do in order for this logic to make sense is amazing.


If you're a mental midget I suppose.
 
2013-11-14 12:40:49 AM  

jshine: Cyrus the Mediocre: But I can still Fark while driving, yes?

Only if you're pretty acrobatic.


I reach down...
between my legs, and...
ease the seat back...
 
2013-11-14 12:50:23 AM  

StoPPeRmobile: JVD: Gig103: Wow - doesn't surprise me but wouldn't it make more sense to just pass an anti-texting law?

I like their intentions of not passing more laws, but it doesn't seem appropriate to issue a speeding ticket. Doesn't pretty much everywhere have laws against inattentive driving? Using that would make more sense to me.

They should go with DUI.


Yeah, this.
 
2013-11-14 12:50:24 AM  
JEEBUS FARKING CHRIST!!! the police are to enforce laws not to make up or interpret them as they seem fit. I am NOT against an anti texting law, but I am all kinds of against cops interpreting laws however they want. at this rate we won't need judges or lawmakers very soon.
 
2013-11-14 01:00:05 AM  

cassapolis: JEEBUS FARKING CHRIST!!! the police are to enforce laws not to make up or interpret them as they seem fit. I am NOT against an anti texting law, but I am all kinds of against cops interpreting laws however they want. at this rate we won't need judges or lawmakers very soon.


the needs of the many outweigh the protestations of the few, assuming they are only citing factually guilty a$$hats,
fact, the majority of accidents in my area are caused by distracted drivers. talking on the phone or texting...or reading or putting on makeup....these people should be arrested, as they are more dangerous than a guy or girl with a couple beers down.
 
2013-11-14 01:21:59 AM  
I like the idea of the camera that snaps when the air-bag is deployed, but word would get out, and they would stick chewing gum over the camera. My idea is to have a sensor in the driver's seat that senses cellular activity, and disconnects the driver's seat belt and disables the air-bag. Maybe Darwin can address the problem.
 
2013-11-14 01:25:55 AM  
I could see this standing up in court depending how the Arizona basic speed law is interpreted.

Basic Speed Rule: A person shall not drive a vehicle at a speed greater than is reasonable and prudent speed under the conditions and actual and potential hazards then existing. §28-701(A) & (D)

Given that texting while driving could be considered unsafe at any speed, you could be traveling 20 mph in a 25 mph zone and still be considered unsafe as you are distracted and unable to respond to road conditions in a timely fashion. Of course if the texting law would cover this behavior as well so getting a ticket for one would probably preclude the writing of the other ticket type.
 
2013-11-14 01:37:45 AM  
They are gonna have a nightmare on their hands when it comes time to defend this in court.
 
2013-11-14 01:42:19 AM  
Pretty soon, looking at your speedometer will be deemed a distraction.
 
2013-11-14 01:44:35 AM  

Krieghund: The Gordie Howe Hat Trick: I drove I-40 from OKC to Albuquerque in the middle of the night while reading a book.
Think I read eight paragraphs in about six hours because the road kept distracting me.

If that's how long it took you to drive it...good god, man, you're insane.

Reading in the dark while driving 100 miles an hour for six hours straight?
Darwin called, but I guess you couldn't hear him over the clanking of your brass balls.


No no! I had the cruise control set for 80-ish and I gave up trying to read when I got to the backside of the Sandia Mountains.

But that stretch from OKC to Tucumcari? Good lord that drive sucks.
 
2013-11-14 01:46:24 AM  

grimlock1972: They are gonna have a nightmare on their hands when it comes time to defend this in court.


What do you mean by nightmare?  It is no more difficult to prove than any ticket.  Officer reports his observations such as using a cell phone and behavior consistent with texting, including any admissions by the driver (which is why you don't tell them anything in a respectful manner)testifies that it caused the driver to behave in an unsafe manner. Defendant gets to tell his side of the story if any. Judge makes the finding. Unless your going to argue that individuals can text while driving safely therefore it is inappropriate to have this interpretation.
 
2013-11-14 02:10:26 AM  

Daedalus27: grimlock1972: They are gonna have a nightmare on their hands when it comes time to defend this in court.

What do you mean by nightmare?  It is no more difficult to prove than any ticket.  Officer reports his observations such as using a cell phone and behavior consistent with texting, including any admissions by the driver (which is why you don't tell them anything in a respectful manner)testifies that it caused the driver to behave in an unsafe manner. Defendant gets to tell his side of the story if any. Judge makes the finding. Unless your going to argue that individuals can text while driving safely therefore it is inappropriate to have this interpretation.


No i would argue the law in question has nothing to do with texting while driving so in in applicable and thus the ticket should be tossed.

Seriously just pass a dam law to cover it and save the cost of having to defend this hair brained scheme.
 
2013-11-14 02:16:32 AM  

Aquapope: They don't have Inattentive Driving laws in Arizona?


$ure, but the fine$ aren't a$ high for violating tho$e as they are for $peeding.
 
2013-11-14 02:24:04 AM  

ItachiNai: Aquapope: They don't have Inattentive Driving laws in Arizona?

$ure, but the fine$ aren't a$ high for violating tho$e as they are for $peeding.


Exactamente. $$$$
 
2013-11-14 02:36:08 AM  

grimlock1972: Daedalus27: grimlock1972: They are gonna have a nightmare on their hands when it comes time to defend this in court.

What do you mean by nightmare?  It is no more difficult to prove than any ticket.  Officer reports his observations such as using a cell phone and behavior consistent with texting, including any admissions by the driver (which is why you don't tell them anything in a respectful manner)testifies that it caused the driver to behave in an unsafe manner. Defendant gets to tell his side of the story if any. Judge makes the finding. Unless your going to argue that individuals can text while driving safely therefore it is inappropriate to have this interpretation.

No i would argue the law in question has nothing to do with texting while driving so in in applicable and thus the ticket should be tossed.

Seriously just pass a dam law to cover it and save the cost of having to defend this hair brained scheme.


There is little to any cost involved.  If a ticket gets tossed, they can appeal it on up the chain to get a determination from the court.  The lawyers involved on the state side are being paid by the state anyway and it isn't going to take much of their time to research and argue this case.  It is better to resolve the issue and see if a new law is needed or not.
 
2013-11-14 03:08:10 AM  
When are they going to start cracking down on old people driving shiatty?  You could give them dui's for all the perscription shiat theyre on and make a mint.
 
2013-11-14 03:52:04 AM  
Focus on the people who cause auto collisions and miss the point.  The AZ law enforcement community supports a texting-while-driving ban statewide, but it has not gotten through the legislature.  For the state police to say "Well, our mission is to keep you safe, so we will just ignore the fact that the state legislature has declined to ban this activity" exemplifies a kind of arrogance, an attitude that law is just rules that hold you back, so you should ignore those rules and just do whatever it takes.
 
2013-11-14 04:07:03 AM  

dahmers love zombie: Next year's headline, "Arizona government to spend tens of thousands of dollars defending cases which will be thrown right the fark out of court on appeal".


Nope. Nearly every "speeding" ticket in CA is 22350    "unsafe speed"

24 in a 25 zone is speeding if there were hazards like a flooded street etc.  texting is a hazard
 
2013-11-14 04:35:17 AM  

ecmoRandomNumbers: Gig103: Wow - doesn't surprise me but wouldn't it make more sense to just pass an anti-texting law?

Phoenix and Tucson already have anti-texting laws, but I don't think it's done jack shiat. Getting a $300 speeding ticket will probably cut down on that. Texting is seriously the most goddamned distracting thing I've ever seen anybody do while driving. People who just drive drunk at least have one bloodshot eye on the road in front of them.


Skipping the rest of the thread for a minute to reply, but New York recently passed a law where three texting tickets = lose your license. I'm kind of amazed they went that far, but it's a legitimate concern. They also put new signage on the highways highlighting that rest areas are now 'texting areas' or something like that. Kind of silly, but... hopefully it will help reduce accidents.
 
2013-11-14 04:42:43 AM  
The 'logic' is probably "they don't know what speed they were doing so we can tell them it was over and ticket them"
 
2013-11-14 04:49:37 AM  

periboob: I like the idea of the camera that snaps when the air-bag is deployed, but word would get out, and they would stick chewing gum over the camera. My idea is to have a sensor in the driver's seat that senses cellular activity, and disconnects the driver's seat belt and disables the air-bag. Maybe Darwin can address the problem.


What about those people who's phone is in a dock to act as a GPS or music player?
What about people who use phones in the rear passenger seat of the driver's side?
Sounds like a lot can go wrong with this.
 
2013-11-14 05:28:32 AM  

lohphat: ecmoRandomNumbers: Gig103: Wow - doesn't surprise me but wouldn't it make more sense to just pass an anti-texting law?

Phoenix and Tucson already have anti-texting laws, but I don't think it's done jack shiat. Getting a $300 speeding ticket will probably cut down on that. Texting is seriously the most goddamned distracting thing I've ever seen anybody do while driving. People who just drive drunk at least have one bloodshot eye on the road in front of them.

Unfortunately it made it worse.

1) Don't get me wrong, it's not a good thing to do, but neither is shaving, doing your makeup, fiddling with radio, ipod, slapping the crotchfruit in the back seat, etc. How do you distinguish risk?

2) Instead of resting your hand on the dash so that the phone is in your field of view, it's forced people insistent on replying to use their phone in their lap, thus increasing the chance of an accident by an order of magnitude or more. One of the rules of IFR training is not to focus on any one thing longer than 3 seconds. By encouraging them to take their eyes off the road my hypothesis is that they've made the situation much worse.


DUI!
 
2013-11-14 05:33:49 AM  

What do you mean by nightmare?  It is no more difficult to prove than any ticket.  Officer reports his observations such as using a cell phone and behavior consistent with texting, including any admissions by the driver (which is why you don't tell them anything in a respectful manner)testifies that it caused the driver to behave in an unsafe manner. Defendant gets to tell his side of the story if any. Judge makes the finding.


Guess how I can tell you've never driven while black, or owned a sports car or muscle car? Have you ever even been to traffic court? Officer observes you stopped at a stop sign, and writes a speeding citation for 12 over the limit (plus another 5-10 if you complain, possibly obstruction if you argue, 'I smell drugs tear the car apart' if you argue for long or the officer is in a bad mood) (automatic extra 5-10 if the officer recognizes you and you plead not guilty before). Defendant gets to speak while the judge completes the paperwork for his fine. The judge looks up when he's finished signing the order for the fine, bangs his gavel and announces the fine.


An unusually honest Houston PD officer once announce to me 'If you see someone driving a hot rod or sports car, then you know they must have been speeding sometime so it's ok to give them a ticket when you see them.'


I'm just hoping they don't start searching and destroying dash cams the way they do hand held cameras. I won't be able to afford to drive.

I've got a trade show in NM this spring, and frankly I don't want to go....  (popehat.com link about involuntary anal probes)

 
2013-11-14 07:34:01 AM  

Justin Bieber's Acne Medication: FTA:  Any speed is not reasonable when you're texting, because you're not fully in control of your driving

That's crap. If I'm suddenly stuck in stop-and-go traffic, texting my wife that I'm going to be late is not dangerous.


Why don't you just, you know, call her?
 
2013-11-14 07:41:46 AM  
Just pull them over, pistol whip them, and shoot their tires out, and leave them there.
Without their phones.
 
2013-11-14 08:13:10 AM  

images3.wikia.nocookie.net

 
2013-11-14 08:53:14 AM  

Dr.Fey: Makes sense.  You can't drive at a speed "greater than is reasonable and prudent."

If you're texting, anything faster than zero is a problem.


Wasn't there just a study that said nearly 1/4 of drivers text?

Yet, 1/4 of drivers don't get into accidents.

Hmm.

/it's almost like the dangers are exaggerated
 
2013-11-14 09:00:36 AM  

Gyrfalcon: Watubi: I was hit from behind by a person eating a sandwich.  That driver was issued a ticket for some distracted driving law and this was 20 years ago.  I don't know why they need a new law for every dang specific thing.

Because freshly-sworn attorneys hop into court and say "But your Honor, the law doesn't actually say 'you cannot drive 65 mph while eating a sandwich' and my client was going well under the posted speed limit and Douchebag v. Asshole clearly states that where the speed limit has not been exceeded a driver can't be found in violation of the law unless he was performing one of the enumerated violations, and eating a sandwich isn't one of them."

The judge rolls his eyes and says "Well, Mr. Prosecutor?" and the DA hesitates just a second, looks at the stack of considerably more important cases on his desk, and says, "Whatever, your Honor."

BANG. "Very well, Counselor, case dismissed."

So now we have to have laws for every dang specific thing.


But... that's a reason NOT to have laws 'for every dang specific thing'- you can always find one thing that's not covered. If you simply have a law against 'distracted driving', that covers ALL causes, even ones that don't exist yet.
 
2013-11-14 09:26:35 AM  
This is Arizona being Arizona... I hate people farking around with their phone while driving, but what I hate more is the cops deciding to interpret the law any way they want to just to increase ticket revenue. Enforce already existing anti-texting laws, assholes...

It's like the story from earlier this week where the State prosecutors are arguing that you should be busted for DUI, if you have ANY THC in your system while totally admitting that it can be in your system for at least 30 days, and there is no way to establish if you used the Marijuana in a place where it was legal or not, or whether you used it legally as medication in Az itself. So in other words, even if you aren't impaired in any way, the pot could be weeks old, and you could have been 100% in the right when you smoked it, they feel that it's their right to saddle you with a charge that will follow you around for the rest of your life.

At least AZ manages to take the news away from Utah every once in awhile.
 
2013-11-14 09:52:05 AM  

Mikey1969: they feel that it's their right to saddle you with a charge that will follow you around for the rest of your life


As long as they get their $10,000 legal fines and fees.  In AZ, they can also give you a DUI for "Impaired to the the slightest degree"  That is if you have 0.01 Blood Alcohol and you don't signal to change lanes they can give you a DUI.  I figure they are now just armed tax collectors.
 
2013-11-14 10:05:30 AM  

MonoChango: Mikey1969: they feel that it's their right to saddle you with a charge that will follow you around for the rest of your life

As long as they get their $10,000 legal fines and fees.  In AZ, they can also give you a DUI for "Impaired to the the slightest degree"  That is if you have 0.01 Blood Alcohol and you don't signal to change lanes they can give you a DUI.  I figure they are now just armed tax collectors highwaymen.


FTFY
 
2013-11-14 10:14:24 AM  

MonoChango: Mikey1969: they feel that it's their right to saddle you with a charge that will follow you around for the rest of your life

As long as they get their $10,000 legal fines and fees.  In AZ, they can also give you a DUI for "Impaired to the the slightest degree"  That is if you have 0.01 Blood Alcohol and you don't signal to change lanes they can give you a DUI.  I figure they are now just armed tax collectors.


Gotta be careful there... Back when I still lived there, we were coming home from dinner and my wife decided we had to stop buy the store right...NOW!! I got over 2 lanes, and immediately had a cop follow me into the parking lot. She aid I cut off a bunch of cars, had I been drinking, etc... I said that yeah, I'd had a beer with dinner. A single beer, and we had started eating an hour and a half before this incident, and I had eaten a full meal. Next, I got screamed at by a very irate cop because my wife had my ID in her purse(Why carry a wallet if she's got the purse and it's the only thing I needed). Lastly, I had just the weekend before cleared up a warrant for an unpaid fine(That had been paid years before), and it was still showing up as "pending". I'm not sure if I was closer to getting shot or getting arrested, having been nothing but cooperative, but this woman's eyes were glazed over at the concept of the upcoming "bust" that she did not hear repeated messages from dispatch that my fine was not current, and that I was free to go. Finally, the motorcycle cop who was partnering with her on their "DUI Sweep" had to ride up to her and yell at her to listen to the dispatcher.

Cops in AZ are getting scary, and in my 20's, I farked around a lot and tended to get questioned by them for being loud and drunk, stuff like that. Now, I'd be afraid to talk to any of them.
 
2013-11-14 10:36:46 AM  

Gyrfalcon: So now we have to have laws for every dang specific thing.


Yes, we do.  It's called the rule of law.  Not "Rule of some thug who happens to have a badge."
In this case, they start by picking on an unpopular behaviour.

This is why it's not going to stand when someone does get around to challenging it.  In the meantime, though, the jurisdiction will make serious bank.

Think about it for just a moment:  Prosecutor/cop/judge decides they don't like people who $Something.
$Something requires a nonzero amount of your attention.  Therefore driving at any speed >0 while doing $Something gets you a ticket.  60 in a 60 zone?  That's 60 over the limit.  Same ticket as doing 120 in a 60."

Prosecutor doesn't like kids?  It's a distraction.  Speeding.  (n.b. many states have EXPLICIT prohibitions against teens with learners permits driving their friends because it's distracting and they can't handle it.)
Prosecutor doesn't like stick?  It's a distraction. Speeding.
Prosecutor doesn't like your taste in music?  It's a distraction.  Speeding.
etc.
 
2013-11-14 10:56:37 AM  

TastyEloi: I'd like to see a camera installed near the rear-view mirror in all new cars, that would take a photo of the driver and passenger seats an instant before the air bag deploys. Any driver caught texting, eating a Big Mac, applying makeup, or any other distracting nonsense would automatically receive a huge fine/prison sentence.


I'd like you to have a camera installed so that every thing you do that might in any way violate some ordnance or law or insurance regulation be properly recorded for future sanctions.
 
2013-11-14 12:25:58 PM  

karlandtanya: (n.b. many states have EXPLICIT prohibitions against teens with learners permits driving their friends because it's distracting and they can't handle it.)


I'm pretty sure that a couple hundred years ago, when I got my AZ learner's permit, there was something in there stating that the fully licensed driver in the car had to be 18 or 21.
 
2013-11-14 12:35:15 PM  

Mouren: periboob: I like the idea of the camera that snaps when the air-bag is deployed, but word would get out, and they would stick chewing gum over the camera. My idea is to have a sensor in the driver's seat that senses cellular activity, and disconnects the driver's seat belt and disables the air-bag. Maybe Darwin can address the problem.

What about those people who's phone is in a dock to act as a GPS or music player?
What about people who use phones in the rear passenger seat of the driver's side?
Sounds like a lot can go wrong with this.


A lot can go wrong with everything about doing something else while you should be steering several tons of metal on a path avoiding other multi-ton metal chunks all while traveling 90+ feet/sec. Checking your play-list or your route planning is a distraction that risks lives of others. At least for many drivers. Some may be qualified. I actually feel safe when riding with my brother-in-law while he is on the phone, but he was a TV reporter for years, and was on the radio constantly, and got good at it. He learned to manage the multi-tasking. Maybe we could include exercises on the drivers test that would see if you qualify for texting/phoning while driving? If you pass, you get a stamp on your license. But we would have to pay examiners hazardous duty pay.

Personally, I treat driving like playing a video game against the other drivers. The objective in this game is to defeat the aliens by getting home safely. If you have an accident, you lose the game.
 
2013-11-14 12:39:39 PM  
Sometimes AZ gets it right: This is one of those times. Nothing gets my road rage going faster than some clown texting while driving (yes, I have been guilty of that once or twice and should not have done it either). But I agree with making texting while driving the same as a DUI. If you're too dumb to realize the chance you're taking with your life AND everyone else's life around you, you should not be allowed behing the wheel. Maybe the incovenience of having to ride the city bus for a year because your license was suspended will get it thru your thick head that YOU AIN'T THAT GOOD TO BE ABLE TO DO BOTH. At least with hands free you keep your eyes on the road...oh, wait...they found that people will STILL look at their phone with that as well.
 
2013-11-14 12:54:26 PM  

lohphat: One of the rules of IFR training is not to focus on any one thing longer than 3 seconds.


IFR or VFR? I ask sincerely, because while I have not been to flight school I feel that it's VFR where you want people looking out, instead of down?
 
2013-11-14 01:11:04 PM  

Gig103: lohphat: One of the rules of IFR training is not to focus on any one thing longer than 3 seconds.

IFR or VFR? I ask sincerely, because while I have not been to flight school I feel that it's VFR where you want people looking out, instead of down?


While VFR see and avoid is important during IFR flight in low visibility conditions can lead to spacial disorientation, you have to keep your scan going.

I find flying IFR more relaxing as you're in the system and have ATC also watching for traffic and separation. VFR flight following is optional but not guaranteed.
 
2013-11-14 01:30:08 PM  
I have a better idea. Charge them with attempted homicide and then throw them in prison for a few years upon conviction. You can already get a vehicular manslaughter charge if you actually hit someone and kill them while texting, why shouldn't the texting while driving itself constitute an attempt?

/ do the same with drunks behind the wheel
 
2013-11-14 01:36:09 PM  

lohphat: Gig103: lohphat: One of the rules of IFR training is not to focus on any one thing longer than 3 seconds.

IFR or VFR? I ask sincerely, because while I have not been to flight school I feel that it's VFR where you want people looking out, instead of down?

While VFR see and avoid is important during IFR flight in low visibility conditions can lead to spacial disorientation, you have to keep your scan going.

I find flying IFR more relaxing as you're in the system and have ATC also watching for traffic and separation. VFR flight following is optional but not guaranteed.


Cool, thanks for explaining. I take it that even if you aren't required to be in IFR (weather, airspace) you can still fly IFR so that you are "in the system"?
 
2013-11-14 03:20:18 PM  

Gig103: Cool, thanks for explaining. I take it that even if you aren't required to be in IFR (weather, airspace) you can still fly IFR so that you are "in the system"?


Yes. When you're flying IFR airspace complexities disappear and you follow directions from ATC.

If you look (and can understand) VFR charts. You have to dodge complex airspace restriction is busy areas like The San Francisco bay area or LAX on your own and rusk getting busted if you make a mistake.

SFO airspace

LAX airspace

When in the system, all those blue and magenta lines disappear.

In LAX there are "VFR corridors" to get around the heavy traffic which require special frequencies and procedures -- no thanks. I like IFR as it's a technical challenge to use it effectively and efficiently. The only time I fly VFR is when I do "bay tours" for friends and visitors -- I have a set route I'm familiar with to doge or request permission to traverse Class B (highly restricted near airports) as I get near or have to cross several of them. It's really cool to be told to cross over the center of SFO at 2500 feet as huge planes land and take off below me -- usually they tell you to stay west of the freeway and skirt around it.
 
m00
2013-11-14 04:25:03 PM  

Bucky Katt: Don't text while driving, jackass.



>Word to the wise: "Texting" is probably a blanket term meaning any staring at a cellphone while driving.

Well, I check my GPS / google maps.
 
2013-11-14 05:28:05 PM  

4tehsnowflakes: Focus on the people who cause auto collisions and miss the point.  The AZ law enforcement community supports a texting-while-driving ban statewide, but it has not gotten through the legislature.  For the state police to say "Well, our mission is to keep you safe, so we will just ignore the fact that the state legislature has declined to ban this activity" exemplifies a kind of arrogance, an attitude that law is just rules that hold you back, so you should ignore those rules and just do whatever it takes.


I'm hardly one to give a kneejerk response that the cops are always right but... they have a good point with this one, just wish they'd picked the correct law to use (i.e. inattentive driving).  Using the basic rule speeding law is just goofy and begging for the state supreme court overturning someone's "speeding conviction" thus invalidating every ticket given out in this manner.

I guess I'm a lumper, not a splitter.  The legislature can get around to adding a legalese description of texting to the inattentive driving statute as prima faciae evidence of inattentive driving when they stop bickering.  It isn't even a judgement call that texting while driving IS inattentive driving.  IMHO.
 
2013-11-14 08:14:36 PM  

gregscott: Many states have  Prima Facie Speed Limits, where the violation driving at a speed which is unsafe for conditions, regardless of posted limits.


The only problem with that is deciding what is "unsafe for conditions" when the law doesn't state a specific speed.

I had this problem with a traffic ticket issued to me in winter.  I was driving one morning after an ice storm on a road that had black ice.  I looked down the road to see at least 4 cars already slid into the ditch and then watched the car in front of me start spinning off the road.  I was doing about 10 mph, tops, and just *barely* touched the brakes to start slowing because of the car in front of me spinning out of control.  My car then slid sideways into the ditch.  The county responded to multiple calls of cars off the road and ONLY THEN did a city truck drive down the road putting salt down: that response came only after the multiple cars in the ditch.  The sheriff deputy walked down the road issuing "too fast for conditions" tickets to everyone as the tow truck was bringing all the cars back onto the freshly salted pavement.  He didn't ask me jack shiat about how fast I was going, what I was doing, etc.  Just wrote a ticket.

So I took that one to a bench trial.  I worked a job that gave me tons of free time during the day so I was being spiteful.  I put the sheriff deputy on the witness stand and asked him "What speed does the law say is 'too fast" in these conditions?"
Answer: it doesn't give a hard speed.
Question: "In your opinion, what speed would have been acceptable for these conditions?"
Answer: "I don't know."
Question:  "How fast was I going to have caused this accident?"
Answer:  "I don't know."
Question:  "How fast were the other drivers going that you ticketed that same day, that same time, on that same stretch of road?"
Answer:  "I don't know."

After that questioning it was a very quick verdict of NOT GUILTY from the judge who pointed out that the law was incredibly vague about that particular violation, and really the only reason that people slid into the ditch was that the city failed to do proper road maintenance (salting after an ice storm).  It was an inconvenience to have to pay a tow truck $50 to get a car back on pavement, but that's really all that should have been an out-of-pocket expense for drivers involved.  I have a small amount of pity for the people who had more involving jobs to be at and it made financial sense for them to just pay the $75 fine to be out of it cheap.  I politely asked the judge to go back and vacate all the same citations issued to people on the same day for the same issue, but she correctly pointed out that all those people should have challenged those citations individually if they didn't want to pay them.
 
2013-11-14 10:16:54 PM  
 ^ nice. I am glad to live in an area that doesn't screw around when it comes to salting for freezing road conditions. I'm not sure I've ever heard of someone getting a ticket merely for spinning out/sliding off the road around here.
 
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