Perhaps, unknown or at least undetected, by many New Yorkers is a new system of cameras throughout the city (750 to be exact), that will snap a phone of the rear of a car, assess its speed, and automatically send its registered owner a ticket for violating the speed limit in a school zone.
The system would be wonderful as a deterrent to auto-based fatalities near school zones if it were not so flawed in both its design and implementation. Flaws in the system make it appear more like a US Mint printing press for the city and state than a real solution to any problem.
In the review of the 1080-a,b.c law, the use of cameras and associated support devices that assess automobile speed, you’ll find a number of disturbing realities.
- Who’s driving that car? The ticket/fine is simply sent to the registered owner not the offender
- The camera can photograph the back of your car where the license plate is. Uh.. OK!
- An agent attests to having reviewed an image and that name is placed on the ticket
- This agent is identified as having been trained to the system. This agent finds you guilty by photograph
- You received an ticket in the mail with a picture of your car’s butt and a note from the agent attesting to your guilt via photograph
- You are asked to pay
It seems to me that in order to receive fair treatment under the law, the accused, like everyone I know, should be provided with the ticket all of the following:
- Evidence of the speed monitoring equipment passing its self-test function. It’s the law, it should be provided to any/all accused
- Certificate of calibration required annually pursuant to paragraph four of Title 7 – RULES OF THE ROAD
- Evidence of operator training, dated/stamped certificate for operator as well as past test performance and history demonstrating competence.
- Evidence of operated signed and completed the daily set-up log.
- 5.ii.A – Photos/Videos shall be available for inspection and copying by the motor vehicle owner and operator. I will need this.
The point here is this, if you place an oppressive system such as this into our transportation ecosystem, the government must be audited to ensure systems are operating as intended. Imagine two conditions, a faulty camera with an uncalibrated speed sensor. How many refunds should the city have to pay if they did not maintain this system per their own quality system?
Imagine the operators. What is their level of competence? The “reader” attests to the viewing and reading of the traffic infraction. Their statement, with their name, is part of the printed message on each violation. The overall experience falls flat legally, it looks like a simple way to draw additional dollars from commuters and do so with little authority. The whole reason a police officer stops you is because you are OBSERVED breaking a law. That police officer’s observation is used as evidence. Their word and testimony stand against yours in court. This system has non-police-trained operators making claims. We the people will be paying these claims. No one has to work very hard and city dwellers simply just pay.