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Multi-Target Photo-Radar System To Make Speeding Riskier 506

Posted by Soulskill
from the time-to-finish-building-that-stealth-buick dept.
mrquagmire writes with this excerpt from Engadget: "Go easy on the gas, Speed Racer, because Cordon is on its way. Developed by Simicon, this new speed sensor promises to take highway surveillance to new heights of precision. Unlike most photo radar systems, which track only one violator at a time, Simicon's device can simultaneously identify and follow up to 32 vehicles across four lanes. Whenever a car enters its range, the Cordon will automatically generate two images: one from wide-angle view and one closeup shot of the vehicle's license plate. It's also capable of instantly measuring a car's speed and mapping its position, and can easily be synced with other databases via WiFi, 3G or WiMAX."

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Multi-Target Photo-Radar System To Make Speeding Riskier

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 31, 2011 @03:04PM (#37898484)

    I am dubious...

  • by 0123456 (636235) on Monday October 31, 2011 @03:07PM (#37898526)

    ...when my Google car is driving itself above the speed limit?

  • by Oswald McWeany (2428506) on Monday October 31, 2011 @03:09PM (#37898554)

    Fortunately South Carolina has Bubba.

    Bubba comes in many shapes and sizes (mostly rotund). Bubba likes to shoot and shiny objects that Uncle Sam sets up alongside the road.

    Bubba works for the good of mankind by filling full of holes things like street signs, street lights, and traffic cameras.

    A speed limit sign, or deer-crossing sign you can just about still use even when it is full of holes. Speed cameras are pretty much useless after the first shot.

    • by EmagGeek (574360) <gterich@@@aol...com> on Monday October 31, 2011 @03:12PM (#37898620) Journal

      What also helps is that unattended speed enforcement is illegal in South Carolina. An actual living, breathing officer has to have witnessed the violation, made the measurement himself, made actual, person to person contact with the driver, issued the summons, and collected the drivers signature.

      Unmanned photo traffic enforcement is a big no-no in SC.

      http://www.thenewspaper.com/news/31/3176.asp [thenewspaper.com]

      • That's interesting- I didn't know that. I really did figure we didn't have detection devices like that because they'd get shot.

    • by Fned (43219)

      'Course, just before the camera goes, it gets a pic of your plate.

      Which is why you do this with your cousin's truck.

      • by Tanktalus (794810)

        Which is why you do this with your cousin's truck.

        So, what, that's any truck with SC plates other than your own? You may want to provide a bit more help and also exclude anyone you live with, including your wife, parents, kids, etc.

      • by Jeng (926980)

        No, this is preemptive action, not a reactive action. You do not shoot the camera while speeding, you shoot it before you go speeding.

        That way the camera doesn't get a pick of anyone's vehicle.

    • by Jawnn (445279)

      Fortunately South Carolina has Bubba.

      Bubba comes in many shapes and sizes (mostly rotund). Bubba likes to shoot and shiny objects that Uncle Sam sets up alongside the road.

      Bubba works for the good of mankind by filling full of holes things like street signs, street lights, and traffic cameras.

      A speed limit sign, or deer-crossing sign you can just about still use even when it is full of holes. Speed cameras are pretty much useless after the first shot.

      I think you're being a bit generous here. A quick survey shows that it takes Bubba an average of at least a half-dozen shots to actually bag that deer on the deer-crossing sign. Also, the camera is going to have taken several "shots" before Bubba can even put down his beer. Hardly a fair fight, I know, but it's the gub--mint we're talking about here, so there you go.

      • by X0563511 (793323)

        I know, but it's the gub--mint we're talking about here, so there you go.

        Epic win, right here.

        Clearly you've been down here!

    • by ktappe (747125)
      Can you please export some Bubbas to Northern Delaware? Just long enough to bring us BBQ and shoot out some cameras. Then we'll return them.
  • I tell the children when I see a policeman with a radar gun that "he's on a revenue drive."
  • Revenue or Safety? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Lev13than (581686) on Monday October 31, 2011 @03:19PM (#37898736) Homepage

    Seems like a very complicated way to collect taxes.

    A useful application would be to target those vehicles which are going more than 10% (or 10km/h or whatever) faster than everyone else. That would actually improve safety and make the highway system more efficient (homogenous traffic reduces braking/lane changes and increases throughput). However, that's not the primary goal of highway speed enforcement so it will never happen

    • by mclearn (86140)

      Wow. The multi-target radar system is *more* complicated than your proposal, is it? I'd like to see how you quantify your variables and make it hold up in a court of law.

      Look, I'm all for simplicity especially when it comes to rules and laws, but anything that is "relative" is asking for interpretation and hence, more complexity.

    • by Arlet (29997)

      Seems like a very complicated way to collect taxes.

      I like taxes that I can legally avoid paying, though.

  • Ok fine then... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by TheCarp (96830) <sjc@caRASPrpanet.net minus berry> on Monday October 31, 2011 @03:20PM (#37898750) Homepage

    Then WHEN this has been implemented for a while... and tickets go up.... and there is no difference at all in accidents or deaths....

    can we THEN admit that we have hit the point of diminishing returns wrt enforcement vs actual safety?

    We keep seeing more rules or better enforcement... and yet.... don't seem to see corresponding improvements in safety. In fact, the only improvements in real safety that I have seen, have all come from safety devices in cars, like air bags.

    We saw it in NY, when talking on phones was banned, and a study was able to verify that yes, people really were switching to headsets or not talking... more than a 60% drop in OBSERVED use...but.... no change at all in deaths or accidents. Yet somehow... that was explained away as not having any meaning (because if the report doesn't say we need more enforcement and more penalties, then its clearly not valid right?)

  • ...It costs a billion dollars.

  • by blair1q (305137) on Monday October 31, 2011 @03:31PM (#37898940) Journal

    First of all, what is the freaking speed limit on that road?

    The only cars in the green are the ones coming to a stop in frame.

    Second, I spotted one car with a green indicator accelerating away from a following car with a yellow indicator. So the thing isn't really discriminating accurately.

    If I'm ever popped by this system, that piece of video will be my defense.

    • It looks like the lowest yellow is 40 and the lowest red is 50. One thing I noticed in addition to your finds is that there seems to be a bit of lag in the decrease of speed ratings, but there doesn't seep to be a corresponding lag in the increase.

  • by Ichijo (607641) on Monday October 31, 2011 @03:35PM (#37898990) Homepage Journal

    They also need to take current conditions into account (wet roads, fog, etc.) to determine if someone is breaking the basic speed [wikipedia.org] law, even when they are driving below the posted speed limit.

    And if they can do all that, they can objectively determine if you're tailgating (driving on a road too close to the vehicle in front, at a distance which does not guarantee that stopping to avoid collision is possible [wikipedia.org]).

    Because so many people tailgate according this definition, this technology has the potential to make roads a lot safer!

  • The tech side of me thinks the video is awesome -- display of speed and ANR result in real time. Pretty cool. The driver side of me thinks that I'm far more likely to get a ticket in the mail which I wouldn't be able to contest. After all, we have the vendor's *word* that the displayed speed and ANR results are accurate and true, but all of us engineers know that no design is perfect...
  • The Police State (Score:2, Interesting)

    by labnet (457441)

    Speed Limits are arbitary limits which do not take into account
    - Weather
    - Vehicle type: are you a sports car or a truck
    - Driver skill / fatigue

    I think most western countries have passed the sweet stop of punative surveilance vs safety 10 years ago. It is now about revenue raising for states that are cash strapped. The cordon system takes this to a new level. In fact I thought of developing a system like this, and thought no, as it doesn't do the public any good.

    What would be better is a fine system that is

    • by Old Wolf (56093)

      There is no reason why government could not calculate the monetary cost of speeding (ie increased accident rate caused by speeding).

      Well, that depends on whether an accident is "caused" by the speeding or not. This is a pretty complicated question. The investigators often report 'speed is a factor', however speed is obviously a factor in every crash. In every single crash, if they'd been going more slowly it either wouldn't have happened or would have been less serious.

      Those sort of studies often competely ignore statistical variance too. For example, sometimes here on a holiday weekend there'll be no fatalities, and sometimes there'll

    • by Burning1 (204959)

      Speed Limits are arbitary limits which do not take into account
      - Weather
      - Vehicle type: are you a sports car or a truck
      - Driver skill / fatigue

      I don't know about other states, but in California what you wrote simply isn't true. The speed limit is a Prima Face limit; if the officer feels that you're driving too fast for conditions, he can cite you with CVC 22350 (same VC used to cite speeding above the posted limit.) The only difference is that he'll have to prove your speed was unsafe in court*. Vehicle typ

  • by bareman (60518) on Monday October 31, 2011 @03:42PM (#37899112) Homepage Journal

    If so I want a dozen of these in my city. On my drive into work this morning three cars zipped through the red light 2.5 seconds after it had changed. On my walk during lunch hour at another intersection I watch 2 more vehicles blow through the just-barely red before they entered the intersection.

    Rather than citations, I'd like auto-cannons installed to gun down the offenders.

    • by roc97007 (608802)

      If you lived in an area that has red light cameras (like mine) you might feel differently. In a perfect world where the police were angels who distributed perfect justice for free, it's probably a good idea. I might even go with the autocannons. Because the problem you describe is very real and very dangerous. And those guys are assholes.

      But in real life, what happens is the local police department makes a deal with private companies, the private companies manage the equipment (putting them in the odd p

  • In New York State, passage on many of the highways requires tolls. Many of us use an electronic system called EZ-Pass to pay the tolls. It's especially pleasant to avoid having to roll down the window during the cold winter.

    Instead of all this fancy monitoring gear, you could just look at the times from toll to toll. It would be impossible to prove that a vehicle was never speeding, but easy to prove that it definitely was speeding.

    I already feel my environment is overly draconian so I've never been one to

  • Based on that video, I should just drive close enough to the car in front of me that half or less of my license plate is readable by the camera. Thanks for increasing road safety, automated ticket systems.

    Although it would be resource intensive I think they still need to do driving tests that realistically assess driving skill and assign speed limits accordingly. That's the only way I would accept the new personal electronic vehicle speed monitoring systems that are starting to hit public use. Theoretica

  • by thogard (43403) on Tuesday November 01, 2011 @09:11AM (#37906288) Homepage

    Victoria Australia has 99+%* speed limit compliance on some highways and its accident count has been steady for a while and the deaths per distance driver has increased in step with the speed limit compliance. This year was on track for being worse than last year except the police decided to stop writing tickets as a protest for more money which resulted in an increase in speed and a drop in the accident rate.

    They run a "Wipe off five" ads here which came from badly done report on crash rates out of South Australia university* that forget to take into account increased traffic density increasing accident rates. They claim by going just 5 km/h over the limit doubles the chance of an accident*. What they don't say is that is true for about 25 km/hr over the limit (as per Solomon quoted elsewhere here). They didn't point out that slowing down everyone increase tail gating which is something like 4000 times more likely to cause a death*.

    Of course using traffic from Adelaide for any other city is like using traffic data from Billings Montana for Los Angles, Rome or Cairo.

    Victoria currently has about 350 people a year die in traffic accidents*. World wide trends in stats show that number is somewhere between 20 and 100 high than it should be*. I figure the "wipe off five" campaign is killing an extra 30 people a year.

    They use the distance over time cameras between Sydney and Melbourne in Victoria and have for years. The police stopped counting a number of single victim accidents in the road stats as well. Apparently stressing out drivers so bad they have a stroke and kill other people doesn't count as a "road accident" anymore since it was a "medical problem"

    * data can be found on VicRoad's annual reports and crashstats web sites and backed up references found in a wonderful bit of fiction published by the Victorian Auditor-General.

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