Tuesday, September 16, 2014


As I said in comments below, I'm not a huge fan of red light cameras. Traffic laws, and their enforcement, should be primarily about safety, not revenue "enhancements" for a municipality (also, too, all law enforcement). Sometimes the safe thing on the road isn't the legal thing, and machines or the evidence they produce can't necessarily pick up on that.

Milbank took to the twitters:

And, well, no, at some level I don't have a problem with ticketing people for going 56. But we do have some established expectations that this doesn't happen, that police generally give people a little wiggle room, and it's also the case that sometimes speeding, at least temporarily, might be the safer thing to do. If the state of PA announced tomorrow that no, we really mean it, speed limits really are a maximum, and not a suggested driving speed, then ticketing people for going 56 would be fine. The bigger issue is that driving 56 in 55 MPH zone isn't creating any kind of safety hazard. Enforcing the 55 limit so harshly wouldn't really improve safety conditions.

I actually had no idea, until today, that people (not all people) believed that rolling stops were part of our accepted driving culture. I mean, I get that people do them. I'm sure I've done them! We all do bad and dumb things sometimes. I'm sure I've driven 75 in a 55 mph zone, too, but the point is blowing through a light, even at 5mph, is much more like driving 75 than driving 56. It is a clear safety hazard, certainly for pedestrians but also for other drivers unless you truly think your senses are that perfect. If I did a rolling stop and got a ticket, I'd suck it up! I deserved it!

Drivers who do rolling stops through signs or lights to make right turns don't look for pedestrians. They're scanning for oncoming traffic from the left, and can't possibly take the time to scan for oncoming pedestrians from the right. Because they're moving. I see this regularly, noticing where heads are pointing as I'm almost hit in intersections.