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Business owner casts reasonable doubt on accuracy of speed cameras

On Behalf of | Apr 22, 2011 | Uncategorized |

Interesting article:

Mr. Foreman, the owner of Eastover Auto Supply in Oxon Hill, examined dozens of citation photos of his company’s trucks that were issued along a camera-monitored stretch of Indian Head Highway his employees frequently travel.
The camera company, Optotraffic, uses a sensor that detects any vehicle exceeding the speed limit by 12 or more mph, then takes two photos of it for identification purposes. The photos are mailed to violators, along with a $40 ticket.
For each ticket, Mr. Foreman digitally superimposed the two photos — taken 0.363 seconds apart from a stationary point, according to an Optotraffic time stamp — creating a single photo with two images of the vehicle.
Using the vehicle’s length as a frame of reference, Mr. Foreman then measured its distance traveled in the elapsed time, allowing him to calculate the vehicle’s speed. In every case, he said, the vehicle was not traveling fast enough to get a ticket.
So far the judges have agreed.

What about in IL?
Camera speeding tickets require that workers are present when using an automatic camera to catch speeders (not when a LEO issues the ticket, hence no more “when lights are flashing” signs).
625 ILCS 7/10 requires the State to prove that “one or more workers were present in the construction or maintenance zone when the violation occurred.” (The offer of proof is new (2007), not the requirement that the devices operate only when workers are present.)
625 ILCS 5/11-605.1 “Special limit while traveling through a highway construction or maintenance speed zone” is the traffic violation for speeding in construction zones for purposes of worker safety and dangerous conditions (e.g. lane changes, barricades, etc.). BUT this does not require the presence of workers.