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Speeding Tickets & Traffic Citations Discussion of appropriate procedures and guidelines to successfully fighting speeding tickets and related traffic citations.

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  #1 (permalink)   IP: 75.203.95.166
Old 2008-03-28
Dr0n3 Dr0n3 is offline
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Default Where/When exactly does the speed limit change?

I was coming around a corner yesterday in a 55mph and rounding the corner there is a speed limit sign that notes the speed limit changes to 45mph. This corner is downhill as well so it seems to be a perfect location for a speed trap (which it was). I was clocked doing 61 in a 45 by laser. I was clocked what I would say to be 100ft past the speed limit sign. My question is where exactly does the speed limit change? Is it when you can see the sign, where to sign is located, is there a certain grace period past the sign you have to slow down? I'm just trying to cover all angles to argue this.
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  #2 (permalink)   IP: 68.2.133.82
Old 2008-03-29
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Craig Craig is offline
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The MUTCD (Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices) standard requires a speed zone to be marked with, at minimum, one sign located at the beginning of the zone. That same imaginary line across the road is also accepted by the courts as the boundary of the zone.

On roads with higher speed limits, having one or more additional signs upstream of the location is also recommended, particularly when topography or other barriers dangerously limit sightlines. If the road's not properly marked and the distance too short to decelerate in time, you've got a legal out.

That sounds like it might be the case in your instance. You may consider pleading not guilty, requesting a trial (by jury, if possible) and start using the public safety/criminal justice juggernaut's bureaucracy to your advantage.

With good preparation, you can win. And you'd avoid attorney fees that could easily run to several hundred dollars. If your record is less than pristine, you'd also be paying about the same bucks for three years of insurance surcharges.

I’d also suggest getting a certified copy of the most current traffic survey on the road in question. You can do this by filing a Public Record Request, a simple matter.

In the survey you’re looking for the most recent speed survey on that road. It should include median speed, 85th percentile speed and 10 mph pace speed. State law requires every municipality to conduct periodic speed surveys, to justify the posted speed limit. But many don’t bother.

If they don't have the survey, the posted limit is invalid. If the cops have been running a speed trap there for a long time without the speed survey having been done, by stopping and citing a citizen, they're committing a felony: extortion, under color of authority. (Translation: give me the money or I'll arrest you.)

And in California, among other states, multiple episodes like yours, done over a period of years, constitute a violation of the federal RICO Act. (LA attorney Ernie Franschesci, in 1990, sued the city of Huntington Beach in a class action, precisely this way for $60 million.)

Good luck.

Craig


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  #3 (permalink)   IP: 192.168.0.1
Old 2008-03-29
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Craig,

This sounds like priceless information...information that I too could use as I recently got clipped for 41 in a 25 zone where the appropriate speed limit should have been at least 35mph, if not 40.

Even though local police can not operate radar in the state of PA, as part of the "click-it-or-ticket" campaign, the local police were issuing speeding citations (to many drivers one day) with the assistance of an unmarked state trooper vehicle parked in an apartment parking lot. My Beltronics Vector 995 radar detector was off as I didn't think I would need it on a secondary road in Norristown, PA...was I wrong.

At any rate, to whom does one file such a request for a speed survey (as this roadway sounds like a good candidate for non-compliance)?

Are these surveys under the purview of the state, county, township, or municipality (sounds like municipality) and can these requests be made to through the court clerk or must we bring them as evidentiary material for case dismissal?

Is there a standard periodicity requirement to such surveys?

Who sets the appropriate periods, is it the state?

I was thinking of going for a PA-3111A, but your comments above may have changed my approach as this road clearly has a posted limit far too low.

Thanks, as always, for being an "Oracle" on such matters.

BTW, Dr03, the manual, Craig referred to is here: MUTCD - 2003 Edition with Revision No. 1 Incorporated, dated November 2004 (PDF)

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  #4 (permalink)   IP: 75.203.217.160
Old 2008-03-29
Dr0n3 Dr0n3 is offline
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well damn...that was very helpful. I have been digging through my brain trying to find every possible angle and this is one i would have never considered. Its not the money aspect its the principle of it. It was the end of the month, I had already let off the gas and was coasting around the corner with my hands off the handlebars just coasting down the hill to a stop and I get a ticket. As well them finding absolutely everything else possible just to meet their quotas. Any other day I would have been given the $112 speeding ticket and let go, but no I got 3 tickets, 2 of them I am sure will be thrown out, and a $125 towing bill for them to take my bike 2 miles back up the hill.

The officer that lasered me wasnt the one who wrote me the ticket so both officers have to be in court at the same time and I can waste both their time as I get out of all 3 tickets.
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  #5 (permalink)   IP: 24.72.191.199
Old 2009-02-21
franke franke is offline
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I was on a 45 mph hwy then it changed to 35 right b/4 a bridge I was clocked on the bridge at 52 How do I know the radar did not hit me when I was still in the 45 zone making me just 7 mph over I am 67 never had a speeding ticket OR a accident or DUI since I was a teenager 40 years . No signs before the sudden change of speed limits . I am no speeder as my past record should prove, should I plead no guilty to the 52 in a 35, I have a letter from my insurance co, Stateng I have never made a claim or had a speeding or ANT ticket in 40 years . I can not get .....
I’d also suggest getting a certified copy of the most current traffic survey on the road in question. You can do this by filing a Public Record Request, a simple matter. (note)This not a simple matter, Know one in city hall knows what I am talking about, Help
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