13 votes

City issued speed camera ticket to motionless car

The Baltimore City speed camera ticket alleged that the four-door Mazda wagon was going 38 miles per hour in a 25-mph zone — and that owner Daniel Doty owed $40 for the infraction.

But the Mazda wasn't speeding. It wasn't even moving.
Speed camera error

The two photos printed on the citation as evidence of speeding show the car was idling at a red light with its brake lights illuminated. A three-second video clip also offered as evidence shows the car motionless, as traffic flows by on a cross street.

The camera that wrongly ticketed Doty on April 24 is in Northeast Baltimore in the 1700 block of E. Cold Spring Lane, at the intersection with Hillen Road. It is the seventh city speed camera that The Baltimore Sun has shown to have produced inaccurate citations bearing erroneous speed readings.

Doty's is the first case in which the vehicle was clearly stationary. City officials gave no explanation for how it happened.

More: http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/sun-investigates/b...




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The system does not generate citations

Just like firearms and electronic voting controversies, the problems are from accidental or deliberate misuse of the equipment.

A police officer issues the citation after reviewing the data. As usual, the government employee (human) in the loop is the problem. It's a warning to never allow computers to judge guilt or innocence because no matter how measurably "good" the system is, it never has wise judgment.

Take back the GOP and Restore America Now.

Should invent a lenticular

Should invent a lenticular license plate cover so you can only view the plate if you look directly at the thing. If you are slightly off axis, you get nothing but blur.

deacon's picture

like this?

http://www.phantomplate.com/

setting your expectations to high,can cause depressiuon

He should be compensated for his time

to answer this frivolous state harassment.

As a software developer

As a software developer I've often thought about how easy it would be to code random triggers into speed cameras. If you did it right it would be almost impossible to detect, and in most cases even the driver would not be able to tell that they were not speeding when they looked at the ticket weeks after the picture was taken. You would at least want to make sure that the car was moving, though. I doubt if this one was intentional for that very reason, but it does highlight why it is a bad idea for the vendors to make money based on the number of tickets generated.

There is only one way this is

There is only one way this is possibly an innocent error and thats if the camera somehow picked up something else moving and thought it was part of the car. I find this to be unlikely though.

The only other option involves programming. Inept or sloppy/lazy programming, or doing it on purpose. I could see either happening. Its possible that the programming wasnt made to handle detecting a car going at 0 speed and when it does, it goofs and inserts a random value because it really isnt supposed to detect vehicles which arnt moving through the intersection(or so I assume, I am not an expert).
The more likely option is that someone programmed it so that upon a randomly encountered vehicle(or say, once every 2000 vehicles, etc), it sticks in a value higher than detected. I am sure the coding is propriatary though and there is no way to know.

To climb the mountain, you must believe you can.

deacon's picture

found a new way to generate

more ill gotten gains?
i wonder how many times this has happened,and how many paid
for thinking they were at fault,or didn't want to cause waves

setting your expectations to high,can cause depressiuon