Speed Estimation (Yours vs. Mine)

I could roll a couple different ways on this one.  I could talk about my ability to visually estimate a vehicle’s speed and compare it to the average joe and their seemingly endless complaints about the whole city driving “at least 50 miles an hour” in front of their house.  (Hint: They are not.)

Today, however, I’m gonna take a different tack.  I stopped a woman today for speeding.  It was about as prototypical as you can get.  Reader’s Digest version:

MC: You know why?

Speeder: Speeding.

Here’s where it got interesting and was the catalyst for this post:

MC: Do you know what the speed limit on Main Ave. is?

Speeder: 45.

MC: Do you know how fast you were going?

Speeder: 55.

MC: 61.

Speeder (suddenly incensed at my obvious exaggeration regarding her speed): 61!?!?  

All the !?!?, in conjunction with her tone of voice, equated to this in my head: Have you lost your mind?  How could I possibly be traveling at such a pace? Do you know how much faster that is than what I thought I was traveling at? How can this be? I refuse, I say, I refuse to grasp the belief that I was driving at SIX miles an hour faster than what my estimation was! Your equipment obviously sent its beam through a wormhole and grabbed hold of a craft that was capable at traveling at such reckless speeds. The very space/time continuum is teetering in the balance as we stand her and debate your ineptitude, sir!

(To answer a side note I’m sure somebody has…yes, I frequently write this in my head as I write a citation. If you ever see a motorcop snickering to himself on the side of the road, it’s probably me cooking up entertainment for you.)

Of course, she didn’t actually say any of that, but I was nonetheless taken a bit aback at her shock at a mere six miles an hour difference.  I’m no math major, but the difference between 55 and 61 is still six, right?  Speaking of math…

55 miles per hour is equal to 80.67 feet per second.  61 miles per hour is equal to 89.47 feet per second.  That’s an extra nine feet per second.  Doesn’t seem like much, does it?  That’s because it isn’t. However, when you think about the speed limit of 45 mph, that changes things a bit. 45 miles per hour is equal to 66 feet per second.  The difference between 45 mph and 61 mph is 16 mph or 23 feet per second. That is a significant difference in my book.

I could blow your minds with more math regarding perception/reaction time at those two speeds, but I think I heard one of you fall out of your chair and bump your head. Terribly sorry about that.

I was at a loss to understand why she was so shocked by a mere six-mile per hour difference for two simple reasons:

1. She already admitted to speeding.

2. She estimated her speed at 55 mph…10 miles per hour over the posted speed limit.

It almost like she thought I was making it up.  She refused to believe that I had got her on lidar at 61.  I’m at a loss as to why it was so preposterous in her mind.

Have you ever been stopped for speeding and haggled with the officer about your speed?

Photo credit: Flickr and michaelroper

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic. Snark is encouraged. Being a prat is not.

35 thoughts on “Speed Estimation (Yours vs. Mine)

  1. No, but only because I’m not a dumbass. (Fine. I am actually a dumbass, just not a big enough dumbass to think it was a good idea to tick off the guy/gal with the badge, gun and calibrated equiptment who is deciding if I’m going on my merry way with a warning and funny story of my encounter with Johnny Law to tell, or getting a cite and fine. But that’s just me.) If I’m pulled, I’m pulled and I know I deserved it. It evens out the other 67,349 times I was speeding and didn’t get popped, so who am I to start complain?

    P.S. Your crazy ass, impressive math is making me feel bad about the speeding I will be doing today. I wish I could say your math was keeping me from speeding. But that would make me a liar and I’ve got my hands full with dumbassidness. Thanks (as always) for the chuckle MC!!

  2. That happens every day my friend… Speeder- “What do you mean I was going that fast?” Me- I got you on laser. Speeder- “My speedometer said (insert made up speed here).” Or nobody believes that you can get their speed before they see you on the side of the road, or you turn the lights on behind then to pull them over…

  3. I have only haggled once with an officer, but that after he told me he caught me speeding on a section of the road I had not been on.

    When the officer pulled a U-Turn, I glanced down at my speedometer and it was at 50. Speed limit was 45 and I was in a group of traffic around 12am crossing a levy near an airport. This levy has only 2 ways to get on it: (1) be driving on it already from a further distance down the road (about 1,000 yards), or (2) Turn on at the last moment before crossing the levy from the access road that runs by the airport.

    The officer pulled in behind me and lit them up, and I pulled over to the side like most good citizens. He approached the car and asked me the standard questions: Do you know why I pulled you over? Do you know how fast I was going? – that’s where I’ll pick up dialog

    Me: I was going 50

    Officer: Not hardly, I tagged you going 60 over the hill.

    Me: Sir, that’s impossible.

    Officer: Oh really, why is that?

    Me: Well, two reasons. I wasn’t going 60 yet (trying to be funny), and because I turned on to ‘Main Street’ from the ‘Access Road’, which is 500 yards after the hill. So I couldn’t have been where you placed me.

    Officer: Are you sure about that?

    Me: Yes, I am certain, I was coming from dropping off a friend in neighboring town, and that was the only way to get from there to here.

    The officer was not very friendly from there out, but he let me off with a verbal warning. I wasn’t trying to be smart with him, but I was definately not going to take someone else’s ticket.

    I also understand the circumstances: It was dark, headlights tend to start to look alike from a distance, the u-turn may have disoriented him and mixed up the cars, or maybe he was looking for drunk drivers.

    Thanks for the great stories MC, I appreciate you sharing them with us! It has taught me a great deal about how to handle situations in my life!

  4. The fellow with the knot on his head got that way by falling asleep in class. I think he’s been drinking.

    Yes, I’ve been stopped for speeding. No, I didn’t argue with the officer. Thanks in a large part to my old father, I’m aware of such things as relative speed and feet per second. I’d like to hear more about reaction time and lighting conditions.

  5. I suppose it’s bad when the highway patrol officer comes to your window and says he clocked you at 72, and your first thought is relief: “only 72? you should have seen it a mile before, right after I finally got out from behind that trailer.” I wasn’t going to argue.

    Incidentally someone pulled up right behind with a snakebite victim (we were on I-5 near Shasta Lake) so I felt like, in some small unintentional way, I helped him get treatment faster.

    The officer hurried to help him… as soon as he finished writing my (well-deserved) ticket.

  6. I know why the difference between 55 and 61 matters to this woman: she’s seen one of those episodes of Speeders where the cop says “Okay, you were actually traveling at XX mph, which would normally get you a $$$ fine, but since I’m in a good mood today, I knocked it down to YY mph, so you only have to pay $$.”

    So basically she’s afraid she has to pay, like, an extra $27.50 per 10 mph over the posted limit. Or whatever. So she figures it’s in her best interest to have her speed be as low as possible. She’s copping to 55, but nothing higher.

    However, someone needs to tell this lady it is even more not in her best interest to argue with/yell at a cop. For any reason. 🙂

    • Leave to you to explain it! I will, however, humbly disagree…but I was there. She didn’t give me the vibe that she cared about the fine at all. She was just hung up on the speed itself.

      • Logic can only get me so far. In that case, I have no idea what was going on in this woman’s alleged mind…

  7. MC, I bow to your mathematic prowess.. I absolutely hated speed/time/distance calculations, and I had it so much easier using nautical miles (6000 feet per NM).

    As for haggling, nope. I’ve got the routine down, though. I pretty much know before the officer hits the pretty little, “I’d like to have a chat with you” invitation lights, that I’m getting stopped. Probably has something to do with being the blur in the fast lane going past the officer, right? I’m in the right lane by the time the car has pulled into traffic (no Motors here in NJ, or at least none near me), on the shoulder as soon as the lights come on. Vehicle all the way over, angled to protect the passenger side. Ignition off. Windows (both sides) down. Radio off. If it’s dark, ALL the interior lights on. Hands at ten’n’two. Big, sheepish grin, ’cause I know I’M the dumbass, and I got stopped because I deserved it (like how I tied that one in, there?).

    I’ve gotten a few tickets, but mostly not. Some of it’s professional courtesy, that pretty little maltese cross in the back window; I think mostly not, though, I just acknowledge that I made the mistake. Any ticket I’ve gotten in the past ten years has not been a “moving violation” resulting in points. Thank god. Yeah, I drive fast. Yeah, I’ve had CEVO, EVOC (police and fire). I’ve been lucky so far…

    Thanks, as always, for the great writing. You’re an inspiration, a comic, and a true role model.

  8. Ahhh, speeding.

    When I took driver’s ed [so long ago we used cars that you had to start with your feet, complete with the dinosaur in the back], the instructor told us we should always “go with the traffic.” He advised, “Better to get a speeding ticket being one of the speeders than being the cause of an accident for going slower than everyone around you.”

    I live next to a road that’s labeled 35 mph. There’s sections where it breaks into 4 lanes, but it is mostly 2 lanes, with a center turning lane, going through residential areas. There’s a school at one far end and I’m near the other end. I refuse to go faster than 40 mph on the road.

    Do I get tail-gated? Nearly every time I’m on it. But there are traffic lights, side streets, school buses, pedestrians, and sometimes ducks from the lake. 40 is fast enough. Being tail-gated isn’t the problem, though, it’s the drivers who get to the points where it breaks out to 4 lanes and floor it.

    One of these days one of them will hit something or, worse, someone. One of these days they’ll say that they “had to do it” because of the other driver (me) going “so slow.” One of these days I’m going to be blamed for an accident I “caused” by refusing to speed more than I do.

    I hate people.

  9. “Eddies,” said Ford, “in the space-time continuum.”
    “Ah,” nodded Arthur, “is he? Is he?”

    I’m so sorry, MC. I just had to!

  10. Been popped for speeding three times since I got out of high school mumblemumble years ago.

    First was a special enforcement deal the local pd was running. The took me, the car behind me, and the van behind him but ignored the semi that was passing all of us. Made sense though. They only had so much room for vehicles to pull off in to. Got me for the speeding and proof of insurance (had the insurance but had gotten the cards mixed up between vehicles. Showed the judge, no sweat) and got the car behind for the speed and something else that was a simple ticket. The van… I dunno what they got him on but he got cuffed and stuffed and the van went on a flatbed and off to impound. When I went to clear up the insurance thing the judge asked if I was also wanting to contest the speeding ticket. She looked shocked when I shrugged and said, “nope, it was fair and the cop wasn’t a jerk so good enough.”

    Second was in town but that’s all I recall….

    Third was a worth a chuckle and then some. Coming back from a friends place in the college town a couple of hours away one fine summer day I decided to hop off of the interstate and enjoy the drive through corn country. Nice sunny day and wasn’t paying any attention to my speed. Crested a small rise and met a deputy coming the other way. I glanced down, winced, and let off the gas. I glanced in the rearview and sure enough he was in the process of making a quick reversal of course and had the lights on. I topped another little rise and saw a field entrance that offered plenty of space to get out of traffic (not much shoulder there just ditch) so I pulled off, killed the radio, got out my paperwork and waited. A few seconds later the deputy crest the hill at a good clip (didn’t take flight but went real light on the wheels) and whips past. His head snapped around and he stood on the brakes. Whipped back around and pulled into the field entrance alongside and gave me a hard look. He walked up and asked for license, etc and kept giving me a hard look. He asked me if I knew why he’d come after me and I explained that yep he had me dead to rights, I was too caught up in enjoying the nice day and had let my speed get a bit too high (yeah….a bit….coughcough) and when I saw him turn around and then saw this spot I figured it made more sense to just set and wait than to keep going until he was right on my butt. Deputy was real nice after that, I guess he had assumed that he was going to have to run me down. He knocked the ticket down to ten over and I decided not to mention his locking up the brakes as he had sailed past.

    Not going to claim to have been a perfectly obedient little motorist since then but I do try to be less of a jackass than the other potential customers. Mostly…


  11. I’ve only gotten one speeding ticket – which I richly deserved. Late to work at 4am, driving a borrowed car, going about 60 in a 35 on a deserted road. When the officer asked how fast I thought I was going, I said I honestly didn’t know (I had a vague idea, but I wasn’t sure and didn’t want to look even dumber). The officer said, “Well, we’ll call it 40.” I was soooo relieved, because while I didn’t know how fast I was going, I KNEW it was faster than THAT.

  12. “Miss, do you know how fast you were going?”
    “Well I do now. I wasn’t paying attention until I saw your lights.”
    My only ticket in thirty years on the road.

  13. Well this one will be a bit controversial and it will not exactly go your way either. It is also going to lead up to an upcoming ask MC email about traffic law and law enforcement that will be equally unique. Please remember MC that, for more than just the reasons I have said in the past, you know I am an MC supporter.

    The talk around town was that certain groups were targeted for tickets, one of those being young kids with nice import cars, especially those Fast and Furious types. I noticed a certain pattern as well with a few people I know getting tickets at all the same speed – 63 – and they swore that they were not going that fast though of course they didn’t know their exact speed at the time.

    In fact the first speeding ticket I got was for 63 mph, but I did not know how fast I was going exactly. I was going down hill in a 45 zone I think, behind a dump truck but I knew the dump truck could not have been going that fast since the highway curves here and there with a good bit of traffic on it all the time. I seem to recall looking down at the speedometer and it was maybe 55 or 56 before I even knew that I was getting pulled over. I did not contest it though, didnt argue. It wasnt me at the time.

    So after 3 more tickets later (ones I knew I deserved) and skyrocketing insurance, I was so careful. At the time I had just grad with my MA and was working 2 part-time jobs that were 1 hour drive apart. So there I was driving between the 2 jobs with my little kid looks, going up that same highway up and over a mountain. On the other side was a steady 6 mile drop down a valley floor with an unfairly slow 45 mph speed limit.

    Just after I passed the top of the hill was an officer going e-x-a-c-t-l-y 45mph in the fast lane down the hill. I knew just by that he was trolling for tickets. So I paced along side him doing 45 mph as best as I could in my new honda accord. Unlike him though I do not have the luxury of the government paying for my brakes when they wear out, and so I was doing my best to maintain speed and not trash my brakes. I got a little in front of him and inched back, and YES I do mean INCHed back. After about 3 miles of that, I had the audacity to commit such a cardinal sin of letting the HOOD (JUST THE HOOD – I meant inched literally, as in my front bumper was 4 inches in front of his front bumper mostly) of my car get in front of his as we rolled down hill backing up traffic at exactly 45 mph. So, he lit me up and pulled me over.

    The same spiel as in the original post ensued. Then
    Liar Cop: You know how fast you were going?
    me: no. (only because my car’s speedometer does not show FRACTIONS, just WHOLE miles- maybe it was 45 1/2 mph, 45 3/8 mph… I have no idea) [waiting to say that in my car…]
    Liar Cop: 63.
    me: silence. (oh so now I know the rumors about that particular department are true, as are my suspicions)
    Liar Cop: Where are you coming from?
    me: work. [in that certain place, one word answers indicate that youre fucking pissed off.]
    Liar Cop: where is that?
    me: certain religious university i wont name here.
    Liar Cop: Oh are you (that religion)? -said with a surprised tone –> note that though I am not explaining, it is clear he is a member of said religion.
    me: no.
    Liar Cop: blah blah blah (I dont care to remember.) Well, next time don’t get in front of a police officer.
    me: (driving off) thinking – *Forget filing a complaint with the police dept. I will show up at every congregation in this whole place until I see him and make sure that he does not get sacrament for a year, just for that lie.*

    Am I implying that there was an unwritten department policy to lie about speeders’ speeds? If you got that impression then you have just passed the reading comprehension portion of your standardized English test. Unfortunately, the good ones out there do have to take it on the chin for the bad ones. So for every 10000 screamers who insist that they were not going that fast even though they were, just remember there is 1out there that knows the ticket is not legit. As for the 45mph zone, it was later increased to 55 mph there and in other locations due to public outcry that it was too slow for those areas.

    So, MC, if you think that was a trip, just wait for the Ask MC question.

    • Sheik, you know I love your commentary! I’ll look forward to your Ask MC. With regard to your experience, I can’t offer anything since I wasn’t there, I’d love to give the benefit of the doubt and all that to the cop since we’re on the same team (allegedly), but I can’t ignore that there are those out there that make it harder for guys like me to be honest. Sorry you had that experience.

      • Of course you like my commentary … because I blatantly copy your humor and writing style! hahaha! Hopefully, too, you also like the random real people examples of your subjects that I find in the news and post on Facebook. They are posted with the hope that they make you feel vindicated in that yes, it is indeed them, not you AND your judgment of personality/character is spot on.

        So, no need to say sorry about that incident since it is a different department, but it does play a part in the one time I did go bat-shit crazy on a cop for a speeding ticket. FINALLY I answer your question! Sorry it took a couple days because I had “family issues day” on Friday and “drive to normal people’s house across country day” on Saturday.

        Yes, I have actually went bat-shit crazy on a police officer once when I got my first speeding ticket (yeah, thanks for noticing the implication) after I moved back here. So I was driving in a 45mph zone headed out of town going over a hill. I knew it was 45 mph. I knew I was speeding, but I was not paying attention to my actual speed. Once I crested the hill there were 2 police cars coming from the opposite direction. As soon as I saw them, one was already in the process of turning around. This is all in a matter of a second or two. I braked suddenly and looked down at my speedometer at the same time. I remember it was at 48 / 49 mph, but again AFTER I was already braking. So, I knew I was busted, and wait for it …. I got stopped and I deserved it!

        Like the wonderful lady above, I did not go bat shit crazy until the officer told me how fast I was going – 61 mph too! (not 63 – different state than the previous post). Funny but I originally thought I was going about 55 too, but unlike her, that stopped being my estimation about 5 seconds after he said 61mph. The reason I thought I was going about 55mph was that I was thinking I could not have slowed down that much in such a short amount of time. Ergo, (<– only a teacher) 61 had to be a lie!!! Yes, I was remembering the previous incident as I was starting in on him, though it was in a totally different state. *shock and awe* against unwitting police officer (UPO) ensued –

        Moron Me (MM) : There is NO way I was going that fast!
        UPO: You WERE going that fast, sir.
        MM: I want to see it on your radar (or something)!!!
        UPO: We are not required by law to show it to you. (Dont you just love that?)
        MM: No! There is no way I was going 61. Show it to me.
        UPO: No. I do not have to do that sir. Plus there is the school zone.
        MM: (handing over documents but madder because he would not show it to me and I was not in a school zone) blah blah blah nonsense about speed…
        then my killer line – "I was going 48mph!! Not 61!!! I know the difference between a 4 and a 6!!!"
        UPO: (rather indignantly) here is your citation for 61mph in a 45.
        MM: (already having doubts seconds later) I am going to file a complaint about you… I know the difference between a 4 and a 6!!!

        He is leaving already, and looking at the ticket, the doubt in my mind left once I saw that he dared to put "rain" down on the ticket as the weather conditions even though it had not rained all day. The road was bone dry. So, yes I did go the 4 blocks back to the station, but again doubts creeping in my mind, all I filed there was a brief verbal tirade.

        Long story short (sarcasm), those doubts were that I knew that 1) I was speeding and 2) that I knew that I had no genuine, provable idea how fast I was going, and 3) the calmly irritated tone of the UPO that he has to listen to diarrhea of the mouth as a job. So, your real question is the haggling. Perhaps, the person is estimating his/her speed while braking and looking at the speedometer at the same time, or perhaps the person is just bat-shit crazy. Perhaps, that person is the adult version of that sweet little tyke whose mother said, "The mean police officer gave mommy a ticket! Cops are bad!" ahh memories!!

        That ticket was 5 years ago, and after that I trained myself to look at the speedometer BEFORE braking when I see a cop starting to come after me. Yep, I have gotten enough tickets to do that instinctively, but I have yet to train myself not to speed. Reely smart hie skool teechur!!! Consequently, not only do I know that I deserved to get the ticket, I do not go bat-shit crazy again when the UPO states my speed. For every other ticket, the officer dropped the speed on the ticket, OBVIOUSLY because of the cooperation, unlike this one time when I did get a 61mph ticket. So it DOES pay to cooperate. Even a little indignation called haggling is not going to accomplish its goal.

        finally, (really!) the incident in the original post did happen and I still have that conclusion to this day. It is a non-issue now, though. Laws against the Fast and Furious crowd have been enacted, and besides, that whole state is to this day dysfunctional. There are plenty examples about blatant fraud in public schools alone that would shock and awe. For that police department and every other, 99% of the officers are honest. Plus it's a non-issue for me now, because at one time I did not need to get pulled over for them to find out that I was bat-shit crazy. The police officers of that same department found that out the hard way, and they could have nailed my ass to the wall for it. BUT they didn't. Once everything was said and done, they have been very understanding and incredible people. Thus, I am really in debt to them for that. Your blog is a good place to see reality from the other perspective. It helps the average citizen to be more honest with themselves and be more self-aware. Thank you for all that you do!!!

  14. Pingback: Favourites Friday!
  15. I have a question. Why do cops ask if we know how fast we were going ? I suggest cutting it. It makes it sound like maybe you’re not sure, and we have a chance to make the situtation look better. Just once, I would like to be stopped fro speeding and have the cop open with, “How are you ma’am? I clocked you at 10 over the speed limit back there. May I see your license and registration, please?” If you ask me a question, I’m going to assume you don’t know the answer to it (yes, even though my daddy has told me I should never assume).

    Also, once I told the officer that I had set my cruise control at the speed limit, to see if maybe I could get off with an assumption that my equipment was broken and why, thank you, officer for pointing that out, I’ll get it fixed right away. It didn’t work. I’m still not sure how that ninja pulled this one off. I passed him once, and then passed him again, a few blocks down on the same side of the road, when he pulled out to come after me.

  16. And why is it that when pulled over and told the speed that they were caught at, people stare at the speedometer for several seconds and then when producing their documents, they have to read them intently as if they’ve never seen them before?
    What are they looking for on the speedometer? the meaning of life? a really good meatloaf recipe?

    • The speedometer? hmmm. The documents are being stared at / reviewed to make sure that they are current. You can’t expect speeders to take valuable seconds to throw away old car registrations and insurance cards!

  17. Years ago, mid 80’s perhaps, I was driving my girlfriends brand spanking new Porsche from the Bay Area to Fresno to run a horse at the fair horseraces. I was humming down the interstate around 100, occassionaly a bit faster for the better part of half an hour. As I approached a cloverleaf to change highways, a MUCH slower vehicle was in the right lane. I debated about whipping around it and continuing on my merry way, but decided since I had been hotfooting it for awhile, I should just slow it down.

    So I painfully followed it around the cloverleaf, accellerated smoothly past and upon checking my right side mirror to ensure my clearance noticed a CHP coming around the same cloverleaf…..sideways. White smoke from all 4 tires, red lights blazing, yep he was in a hurry. Already some distance from the cloverleaf, I signaled, moved over to the right lane and continued at 55. CHP side slid all the way from the cloverleaf to the fast lane, and after a minute caught up and pulled right in behind me. Without hesitation, I signaled and pulled over, stopped and got out of the car with license and registration in hand.

    CHP: Going kinda fast weren’t you son? (I was 22 and looked all of 15 at the time)
    Me: Yeah….I have to be in Fresno to saddle a horse for the first race.
    CHP: How fast were you going?
    Me: 65 All the Way Sir (55 was the state limit then)
    CHP: BULLSH*T (while rearing back and slamming his ticketbook to the ground and then turning and pointing at his patrol car, at which point I thought I was clearly going to jail). I had that Black SOB (He didn’t abreviate) on the floor for 22 miles and everytime I saw you, that thing (pointing at my Porsche) was just topping another ridge. (Remember these CHP cars were the Detroit legends that had been decreed as only capable of going 85 mph.)
    Me: (Now standing there with both hands in the air) I think it sucks that they make you guys drive those clunkers when a punk kid like me could easily speed away from you. When do you think they will get their head out of their donkeys and fix this problem?
    CHP: Soon I hope, we all just hate em. OK, tell me again why you are such a hurry.
    Me: I have to saddle a horse in the first race at Fresno, my boss is counting on me cuz he has to saddle one at Bay Medows today.
    CHP: What’s it’s name?
    Me: War Admiral (I honestly don’t remember the nag’s name this many years later but I dug out the program to show him which horse.)
    CHP: I’m going to write you up for 70.
    Me: Even though I was only doing 65? (while sporting a big ol grin)
    CHP: (Pushing his sunglasses up so he could see my face) Yah right.

    He wrote the ticket on the hood of his BSOB and I signed it. He cautioned me to be careful and I could still make the first race on time. As I recall the ticket cost me $75 and NO, I didn’t protest. I don’t think it was too long after that the CHP got new Mustangs that didn’t have the 85 mph limit. I’ll bet no one was happier than that guy. I got stopped a week later in that same Porsche coming over the Benicia Bridge for doing 60 in a 55. That guy was a real jerk even if he was just doing his job.

  18. I remember riding with my dad a long time ago when he got stopped for going 55 or so in a 45 zone. He protested that the speedometer was faulty due to the oversized tires his Blazer was sporting, and decided to fight the ticket in court. The judge told him that, since the speedometer was fault, it needs to be fixed and that he now has 30 day to do so or pay the ticket plus a fine.
    My dad, after buying and installing new gears for the transmission output to the speedometer, said that it would have cost less to just pay the ticket.
    Moral of the story: the equipment is rarely the issue. Just pay the stupid ticket.

    • Very true…and, to my understanding, the size of the tires wouldn’t effect the speedometer to the tune of 10 mph. 🙂

  19. I wasn’t speeding on my favorite experience of getting pulled over, but in my eyes a great story that honesty is the best policy. In the late ’80’s during the 1st half of my USAF career, I was approaching a 4 lane hwy from a side road in town, stop sign, but no traffic light. Traffic on this particular hwy is usually heavy, and as I approached it, traffic was clear enough to get accross safely, but only if I didn’t stop at the sign that clearly stated I was required to. The oncoming traffic was led by a city police cruiser, but being in a hurry, I decided to take my chances and zip right across. Once on the other side and entering in a residential neighborhood, I checked my rearview, and sure enough, the officer was behind me with the lights on. When he approached it went something like this:

    PO: Do you know why I stopped you?
    Me: Probably for blowing through that stop sign back there.
    PO: (chuckling) Yep, didn’t you see me coming?
    Me: Sure did, but I was in a hurry, knew if I stopped I’d have to wait who knows how long for the next break in traffic, and decided to take my chances. Now as I am in a hurry, I would appreciate it if you would go ahead and write my ticket so I can be on my way.
    PO: (Chuckling harder) Tell me you won’t do it again and I’ll let you off with a warning.
    Me: I can’t do that
    PO: (No longer chuckling, now staring in disbelief) Excuse me?
    Me: I’m not going to sit here and tell you I’m going to stop at every stop sign from here on out as I know I won’t. ‘Cause if you catch me again, you’ll come down harder on me. So I would just as soon be honest and take my medicine like a man.
    PO: (Now laughing is A__ off) I tell you what, if you SEE ME COMING, can you stop?
    Me: That I can try to do.
    PO: Get out of here.

    No ticket, No written warning. Spent 9 years stationed in that town, never got pulled over by them again.

Comments are closed.