DPS Announcement

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George Durden

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Jan 12, 1992, 7:31:34 PM1/12/92
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Texas DPS Announced on Friday that Austin and surrounding areas in central
Texas would be on of the first areas in Texas (and in the US) to receive
the new Infrared Laser Speed measuring guns. These guns are similar to RADAR
in function, but use a narrow beam Infrared Laser to measure doppler shift
and thus speed of the target vehicle. This gun is bigger and bulkier than
current handheld RADAR units (the one shown on TV) and must be aimed at
a specific vehicle using a rifle type scope. Since they utilize a different
method of determining doppler shift (Infrared vs. Microwave), current
RADAR detectors are useless in detecting these devices (and if you did
detect it, it would be too late, you've already been clocked). Since this
device uses a narrow beam laser, you can't detect spurious emmisions aimed
at other vehicles (unless the cop is a really bad shot).

Be careful out there!!!

George (seriously considering doing 55 on MOPAC) Durden
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Bob Izenberg

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Jan 13, 1992, 12:23:34 AM1/13/92
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In article <1992Jan13.0...@pencom.com> g...@pencom.com writes:
>Texas DPS Announced on Friday that Austin and surrounding areas in central
>Texas would be on of the first areas in Texas (and in the US) to receive
>the new Infrared Laser Speed measuring guns.

Does anyone who's budget-smart out there know what these cost, and how many
have been purchased?

Bob
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Steve Blair UNIX Network Services

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Jan 13, 1992, 10:40:41 AM1/13/92
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In article <1992Jan13.0...@dogface.austin.tx.us>, b...@dogface.austin.tx.us (Bob Izenberg) writes:
> Does anyone who's budget-smart out there know what these cost, and how many
> have been purchased?
>
> Bob


The local news shows said each unit costs ~ $ 3700.00 . And they
quoted DPS spokesman sa saying that "we can't afford them, YET".


--
Steven C. Blair DELL UNIX NETWORK OPERATIONS sbl...@dell.com
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John Steczkowski

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Jan 13, 1992, 9:32:56 AM1/13/92
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In article <1992Jan13.0...@dogface.austin.tx.us>
b...@dogface.austin.tx.us (Bob Izenberg) writes:
> In article <1992Jan13.0...@pencom.com> g...@pencom.com writes:
> >Texas DPS Announced on Friday that Austin and surrounding areas in central
> >Texas would be on of the first areas in Texas (and in the US) to receive
> >the new Infrared Laser Speed measuring guns.
>
> Does anyone who's budget-smart out there know what these cost, and how many
> have been purchased?

GEICO insurance has donated a total of 1 (one). The article in the Stateman
said that the DPS was currently not planning on buying any others.

John

Dick Parshall

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Jan 13, 1992, 10:16:54 AM1/13/92
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>Does anyone who's budget-smart out there know what these cost, and how many
>have been purchased?

The Austin American-Statesperson article stated the cost at $3700, but DPS
didn't buy any. It sounds like they currently only have one unit, and it
was donated to them by the GEICO Insurance Company. I know who's never
going to get my insurance business!

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Austin Development Center
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Todd Nix

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Jan 13, 1992, 9:14:58 AM1/13/92
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>In article <1992Jan13.0...@pencom.com> g...@pencom.com writes:
>>Texas DPS Announced on Friday that Austin and surrounding areas in central
>>Texas would be on of the first areas in Texas (and in the US) to receive
>>the new Infrared Laser Speed measuring guns.

>Does anyone who's budget-smart out there know what these cost, and how many
>have been purchased?

According to the Real-Estatesman:
They cost about $3700 each. The DPS only has one right now. It was donated to
them by Geico Insurance. Apparently, they are planning to get more later, but
they want to check this one out first. Geico has apparently bought them for
other states, also.

--
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Movement1981-1982Power,Corruption,andLiesLowLifeBrotherhoodSubstanceTechnique

Doug McLaren

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Jan 13, 1992, 3:57:17 PM1/13/92
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-Texas DPS Announced on Friday that Austin and surrounding areas in central
-Texas would be on of the first areas in Texas (and in the US) to receive
-the new Infrared Laser Speed measuring guns. These guns are similar to RADAR

Yup. But there is a good side ... it's so expensive that they only get one of
these new guns (for now ...) So while one cop has this new gadget, all the
others are stuck with the old fashioned microwave units. Of course, they may
also be out to prove that the old units work work just fine ... :(

And if you're the only car on the road, and you come over that hill at 85mph
and that cop gets you with his old microwave gun, it's all over... even with
your radar detector. They're *not* perfect ... they can't detect radar that's
not on ...

I guess the moral of that story is don't speed if you can't afford a ticket.
Or if you do speed, keep it slow enough that the cop won't pull you over ... :)
(Don't do the crime if you don't (aint?) got the time ...)

Here's my idea ... how about it you painted your car black ... really dark
black ... you'd have your 'stealth car' ... but then again, all they have
to do is hit some chrome with the beam and it's all over ...


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Glenn R. Kronschnabl

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Jan 14, 1992, 9:46:59 AM1/14/92
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From what I hear, GEICO's motivation is to help the Police
depts hand out more tickets. They figure the more tickets
that are handed out, the more tickets people will have on
their driving records. This gives them the *right* to charge you
*much more* for your insurance. I'm sure they won't admit it.
Instead GEICO will state some BS quote saying we just want to
make the roads safer by forcing people not to speed, thus
*lowering* insurance rates.

What a crock!!!

Regards,
Glenn
----
Glenn R. Kronschnabl
UT-Austin (but an Aggie at heart!)
I didn't do it, you didn't see me do it, you can't prove anything!

Internet: g...@ccwf.cc.utexas.edu
g...@aristotle.jpl.nasa.gov

Ronald S Woan

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Jan 15, 1992, 11:26:27 AM1/15/92
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Actually I doubt more tickets would be handed out, as a APD senior
sargent pointed out to me in the Citizens' Police Academy last night,
they can pretty much write as many tickets as they want already. They
don't when they are on the way to calls (no that doesn't mean lights
are on) or when it's more trouble than it's worth. I think it's more
of a scare tactic targeted towards those speeders that believe that
their radar detectors makes them invincible and gives them a license
to speed.
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+-----All Views Expressed Are My Own And Are Not Necessarily Shared By------+
+------------------------------My Employer----------------------------------+
+ Ronald S. Woan wo...@cactus.org or wo...@austin.vnet.ibm.com +
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John Steczkowski

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Jan 17, 1992, 10:34:20 AM1/17/92
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In article <44...@d75.UUCP> wo...@exeter.austin.ibm.com (Ronald S Woan) writes:
>
> Actually I doubt more tickets would be handed out, as a APD senior
> sargent pointed out to me in the Citizens' Police Academy last night,
> they can pretty much write as many tickets as they want already. They
> don't when they are on the way to calls (no that doesn't mean lights
> are on) or when it's more trouble than it's worth. I think it's more
> of a scare tactic targeted towards those speeders that believe that
> their radar detectors makes them invincible and gives them a license
> to speed.

The scare tactic won't last long, according to the Austin American Statesman,
Tracor (an Austin based company) is selling the technology to build laser
detectors to Bel electronics (makers of so-so radar detectors). Can Cincinati
Microwave be far behind? Looks like it's almost time to spend money on more
ECM.

--
John Steczkowski st...@pencom.com
"It is better to go into a corner slow and come out fast,
than to go into a corner fast and come out dead." Stirling Moss

John Iacoletti

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Jan 17, 1992, 1:10:19 PM1/17/92
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In article <65...@ut-emx.uucp>, g...@ccwf.cc.utexas.edu (Glenn R. Kronschnabl) writes:
|>
|> From what I hear, GEICO's motivation is to help the Police
|> depts hand out more tickets. They figure the more tickets
|> that are handed out, the more tickets people will have on
|> their driving records. This gives them the *right* to charge you
|> *much more* for your insurance. I'm sure they won't admit it.
|> Instead GEICO will state some BS quote saying we just want to
|> make the roads safer by forcing people not to speed, thus
|> *lowering* insurance rates.

There's a blurb in the Statesman today about Tracor being involved in
developing a "laser detector". Ain't technology wonderful?

GEICO, meanwhile, will never have the priviledge of obtaining my
business because of this grand gesture (not that they would have
anyway--I've heard that they will go to any length to avoid paying
claims).

--
John Iacoletti Internet: joh...@hwperform.austin.ibm.com
IBM Advanced Workstations Div. "If it wasn't for disappointment, I wouldn't
Austin, TX have any appointment." -- TMBG
My opinions do not reflect the views of the IBM Corporation

Brendan B. Boerner

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Jan 19, 1992, 4:38:56 PM1/19/92
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In article <15...@awdprime.UUCP> joh...@hwperform.austin.ibm.com (John Iacoletti) writes:
>GEICO, meanwhile, will never have the priviledge of obtaining my
>business because of this grand gesture (not that they would have
>anyway--I've heard that they will go to any length to avoid paying
>claims).

My experience with them was when I backed into a woman passing
behind me in the Univ. Fed. Credit Union parking lot. I tore off
half my rear bumper and put a dent in her rear fender. This was on
a Sunday and the only complaint I had through the entire experience
was that I called around 3pm and the call wasn't return until after
7pm.

Also, I was pretty nervous about how my rates were going to skyrocket
and was pleasantly surprised that they only went up about $20-$30/six
months (consider though that I was under 25 so my rates were already
fairly high). This was for about $800 total bill for damage
to my car, I don't know how much the bill was for the other
individuals.

Brendan
--
Brendan B. Boerner Phone: 512/794-0482
Internet: boe...@emx.cc.utexas.edu UUCP: ...!cs.utexas.edu!ut-emx!boerner

Ronald S. Woan

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Jan 19, 1992, 10:39:51 PM1/19/92
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In article <15...@awdprime.UUCP> joh...@hwperform.austin.ibm.com (John Iacoletti) writes:
>GEICO, meanwhile, will never have the priviledge of obtaining my
>business because of this grand gesture (not that they would have
>anyway--I've heard that they will go to any length to avoid paying
>claims).

I tagged the wall of a parking garage just before Christmas (long story,
stormy day) and dented a front fender and scratched the bumper. I called
the 800 claim number and within ten minutes I had a claim number and
appointment with their adjuster in South Austin the next day, an hour
and a half before I was scheduled to fly to Virginia for the holidays.
The appointment took fifteen minutes and I left with a check for $960
made out to me and the body shop. I was able to drop off my car at the
body shop and make the flight without incident.

I'm very interested in seeing what happens to my premium now... When
I shopped around for insurance, GEICO was about 20% lower than the
closest competitor...

--
+-----All Views Expressed Are My Own And Are Not Necessarily Shared By------+
+------------------------------My Employer----------------------------------+
+ Ronald S. Woan wo...@cactus.org or wo...@austin.vnet.ibm.com +

+ othernet Prodigy: XTCR74A Compuserve: 73530,2537 +

John Bodnar

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Jan 20, 1992, 2:22:45 AM1/20/92
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According to joh...@hwperform.austin.ibm.com (John Iacoletti):

>There's a blurb in the Statesman today about Tracor being involved in
>developing a "laser detector". Ain't technology wonderful?

In the Dallas Morning News last week, there was a blurb that the Texas DPS
just bought about 500 of these things (didn't mention who from). The field
spread is about 3 feet when it hits your car, so a radar detector is
useless. Maybe that explains all the people I saw pulled over by DPS on
the way down here today :-)

--
John Bodnar Internet: jbo...@ccwf.cc.utexas.edu
The University of Texas at Austin UUCP: ....!cs.utexas!ut-ccwf!jbodnar
>> Toscanini on the Inexplicable: "I say is possible one day I am stupid." <<

John F Haugh II

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Jan 19, 1992, 11:44:11 PM1/19/92
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In article <65...@ut-emx.uucp> boe...@ut-emx.uucp (Brendan B. Boerner) writes:
>My experience with them was when I backed into a woman passing
>behind me in the Univ. Fed. Credit Union parking lot. I tore off
>half my rear bumper and put a dent in her rear fender. This was on
>a Sunday and the only complaint I had through the entire experience
>was that I called around 3pm and the call wasn't return until after
>7pm.

My experience with them is similiar to John's. I have 15+ years of
driving experience with only one claim (for vandalism) in all that
time. With quite a few speeding tickets, a red sports car, and a
RADAR detector, GEICO refuses to cover me. That's really a shame,
because in those 15 years, I've paid in about $15,000 in premiums
and collected about $1,000 in claims. Now that State Farm is my only
insurance agent (and they don't care that I speed, or so it seems
compared to GEICO and others), I'm quite happy to give them all my
money.

The FACTS are that 40% of all accidents happen in intersections and
about 60% happen at night. Setting up speed traps in straight
sections of I-35 during daylight hours DOES NOTHING to reduce traffic
fatalities. Thems the facts - I should know, they tell them to you
every time you take defensive driving (and with my record, I take it
every two years ;-) Speed is NOT a factor in the cause of accidents.
The most significant factors are road conditions, lighting, age and
driver state of mind.

The DPS is not interested in reducing accidents, only in writing
tickets. GEICO isn't interested in covering good drivers - and I
don't have a clue what they ARE interested in.
--
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Brendan B. Boerner

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Jan 20, 1992, 10:50:07 AM1/20/92
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In article <20...@rpp386.cactus.org> j...@rpp386.cactus.org (John F Haugh II) writes:
>The FACTS are that 40% of all accidents happen in intersections and
>about 60% happen at night. Setting up speed traps in straight
>sections of I-35 during daylight hours DOES NOTHING to reduce traffic
>fatalities. Thems the facts - I should know, they tell them to you
>every time you take defensive driving (and with my record, I take it
>every two years ;-) Speed is NOT a factor in the cause of accidents.
>The most significant factors are road conditions, lighting, age and
>driver state of mind.

John,

The only thing I can think of off the top of my head is this:
suppose a small percentage of accidents happen on the road above
60MPH, could it be argued that because of the higher speed, more
damage (property, bodily) is done because of the high speed that it
outweighs the damage done by the higher percentage of accidents
occuring in intersections?

John F Haugh II

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Jan 20, 1992, 1:17:10 PM1/20/92
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In article <65...@ut-emx.uucp> boe...@ut-emx.uucp (Brendan B. Boerner) writes:
>The only thing I can think of off the top of my head is this:
>suppose a small percentage of accidents happen on the road above
>60MPH, could it be argued that because of the higher speed, more
>damage (property, bodily) is done because of the high speed that it
>outweighs the damage done by the higher percentage of accidents
>occuring in intersections?

Nope. Once you remove things such as drunk driving related fatalities
(about 23,000) and fatalities caused by hitting fixed objects (about
13,000), driving down I-35 at 70MPH on a clear sunny day while completely
sober shows up as noise. Yes, at 70MPH the fatality rate IS 4 times
higher - if you have a collision. But again, speed is not a factor in
accidents, and most accidents don't happen on straightaway streets in
broad daylight. To be meaningful, 25% of the accidents would have to
be caused by speeding 70 in a 50 (just as an example ...), but they
don't.

Open freeway collisions are much more rare than that - nightime
overruning collisions alone are a significant cause of death, and police
never set up speed traps on unlit country roads in the middle of nowhere.
And with drunk driving having such a strong correlation with traffic
fatalities, concentrating on speeders is wasted effort.

Worse than that, in the places where fatalities are much more directly
related to speed, such as residential neighborhoods and elementary
school zones (about 8,000 pedestrian and cyclist deaths), we don't see
the speed traps. The 10MPH different between 20 in a school zone and
someone speeding 30 can raise the stopping distance from a low of 40'
to high somewheres around 80'. A 10MPH change does not result in the
same 100% increase in stopping distance when the posted limit is 65MPH.

Most tragic of all are states such as Texas where 30MPH is a common
posted speed for residential areas, as compared to other states where
20 or 25 is more common. Strict enforcement of 20MPH residential zones
(which would require speed traps in residential neighborhoods, something
we don't commonly see) would bring cars to a stop in 40 to 44', compared
to lax enforcement of 30MPH residential zones (common in Austin where
speed traps are set up on freeways and major arteries) where speeders
need 108 to 124' to slow down from 40MPH. The fine structure, with its
basis in MPH over the limit, not increased stopping distance, does
not discourage the most serious variety of speeding.

Certainly some of the fatalities listed above are being counted twice.
But speeding just doesn't show up as either a cause of accidents, or a
cause of death more significant than the major preventable causes, such
as drunk driving or not wearing seatbelts. If it is safe to drive 130MPH
in Germany, it really is safe to drive it here. The Interstate highway
system WAS designed for much higher speeds than what we drive on it.

Donald A. Varvel

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Jan 20, 1992, 4:01:00 PM1/20/92
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In article <65...@ut-emx.uucp> boe...@ut-emx.uucp (Brendan B. Boerner) writes:
>In article <20...@rpp386.cactus.org> j...@rpp386.cactus.org (John F Haugh II) writes:
>>The FACTS are that 40% of all accidents happen in intersections and
>>about 60% happen at night. Setting up speed traps in straight
>>sections of I-35 during daylight hours DOES NOTHING to reduce traffic
>>fatalities. Thems the facts - I should know, they tell them to you
>>every time you take defensive driving (and with my record, I take it
>>every two years ;-) Speed is NOT a factor in the cause of accidents.
>>The most significant factors are road conditions, lighting, age and
>>driver state of mind.

>John,

>The only thing I can think of off the top of my head is this:
>suppose a small percentage of accidents happen on the road above
>60MPH, could it be argued that because of the higher speed, more
>damage (property, bodily) is done because of the high speed that it
>outweighs the damage done by the higher percentage of accidents
>occuring in intersections?

>Brendan

I certainly don't have John's experience with defensive driving
courses, since I have never been stopped for speeding and ride
a bicycle most of the time. However, the Air Force made everyone
take such a course when I was in (sometime around 1970). Doctrine
at that time was that driving faster than the flow of traffic was
less likely to get you involved in an accident than driving slower
than the flow, but was *more* likely to get you killed.

That suggests two things. First of all, speed was believed at that
time to be a factor in accidents. Driving too *slowly* was more
of a factor than driving too fast. And it was also believed (on
the basis of some statistics) to be a factor in fatalities, in this
case directly correlated.

Admittedly the Air Force contractor that put on that particular
dog-and-pony show had an agenda that didn't include urging us to
break speed limits. Still, the argument has always made sense to
me.

-- Don Varvel (var...@cs.utexas.edu)

Frank Bieser

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Jan 21, 1992, 10:19:14 AM1/21/92
to
In article <knme4c...@cs.utexas.edu> var...@cs.utexas.edu (Donald A. Varvel) writes:
>In article <65...@ut-emx.uucp> boe...@ut-emx.uucp (Brendan B. Boerner) writes:
>>In article <20...@rpp386.cactus.org> j...@rpp386.cactus.org (John F Haugh II) writes:
>>>The FACTS are that 40% of all accidents happen in intersections and
>>>about 60% happen at night. Setting up speed traps in straight
>>>sections of I-35 during daylight hours DOES NOTHING to reduce traffic
>>>fatalities.
>
>I certainly don't have John's experience with defensive driving
>courses, since I have never been stopped for speeding and ride
>a bicycle most of the time. However, the Air Force made everyone
>take such a course when I was in (sometime around 1970). Doctrine
>at that time was that driving faster than the flow of traffic was
>less likely to get you involved in an accident than driving slower
>than the flow, but was *more* likely to get you killed.
>
>That suggests two things. First of all, speed was believed at that
>time to be a factor in accidents. Driving too *slowly* was more
>of a factor than driving too fast. And it was also believed (on
>the basis of some statistics) to be a factor in fatalities, in this
>case directly correlated.
>
>Admittedly the Air Force contractor that put on that particular
>dog-and-pony show had an agenda that didn't include urging us to
>break speed limits. Still, the argument has always made sense to
>me.

I think the point about greater odds of death from speed has to do
with the assumption that IF you have an accident, your chances of
dieing in the accident are directly proportional to the speed you
were going. Obviously, if you are going faster than you or the car
can safely operate at, your chance of having an accident go up. But
given the extremely high volume of highway miles traveled every day,
such numbers are lost in the noise.


As to why the police choose the places they do to radar I believe
has to do with one thing only; money. If you look at the DPS's and
APD's anual budgets you find assumed revenue amounts from traffic
fines. I don't have the latest numbers, but for 1989, the DPS
expected, and budgeted in roughly $1.5M from speeding citations.
I know all law enforcement agencies will deny they have quotas,
and in fact, they probably don't. Because all they have to do is
chose the optimum time (holidays/weekends) and places (major arteries)
for setting up speed traps and they can meet their revenue projections
by doing volume business. I suspect if they were really interested
in decreasing accidents by enforcing speed limits, they would change
the behaviour to controlling the speeds in higher risk areas (as
it was suggested earlier).

--

-- Frank Bieser (fra...@hal.com)

ro...@moller3.austin.ibm.com

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Jan 21, 1992, 1:11:21 PM1/21/92
to
In article <20...@rpp386.cactus.org>, j...@rpp386.cactus.org (John F
Haugh II) writes:

[...]

>
> The DPS is not interested in reducing accidents, only in writing
> tickets. GEICO isn't interested in covering good drivers - and I
> don't have a clue what they ARE interested in.

Of course you do, John! They, like every other insurance company, are
interested in extorting as much money as possible from the populace,
usually with the eager assistance of the politicians, while providing
the least possible service.

> --
> John F. Haugh II | Every 56 days. | UUCP:
...!cs.utexas.edu!rpp386!jfh
> Ma Bell: (512) 255-8251 | Give Blood, often. | Domain:
j...@rpp386.cactus.org
>
> HI ! I'm a mutating signature virus. You cannot resist helping me spread !


Chris Moller (ro...@moller3.austin.ibm.com)

IBM pays absolutely no attention to my opinions, ergo the
foregoing cannot possibly represent its position.

John Iacoletti

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Jan 21, 1992, 12:03:12 PM1/21/92
to
In article <20...@rpp386.cactus.org>, j...@rpp386.cactus.org (John F Haugh II) writes:

|> The FACTS are that 40% of all accidents happen in intersections and
|> about 60% happen at night. Setting up speed traps in straight
|> sections of I-35 during daylight hours DOES NOTHING to reduce traffic
|> fatalities.

Yes. The primary objective seems to be to raise revenue (have you
driven through Nolanville lately?).

John Iacoletti

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Jan 21, 1992, 11:58:56 AM1/21/92
to
In article <65...@ut-emx.uucp>, jbo...@ccwf.cc.utexas.edu (John Bodnar) writes:

|> In the Dallas Morning News last week, there was a blurb that the Texas DPS
|> just bought about 500 of these things (didn't mention who from). The field
|> spread is about 3 feet when it hits your car, so a radar detector is
|> useless. Maybe that explains all the people I saw pulled over by DPS on
|> the way down here today :-)

The article in the American-Statesman didn't go into the technical
details, but it claimed that the detector has a range which is twice
that of the laser-gun, allowing you to detect it before it detects you
(presumably when it's detecting another car).

ch...@ng.austin.ibm.com

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Jan 21, 1992, 2:13:35 PM1/21/92
to

>
> I'm very interested in seeing what happens to my premium now... When
> I shopped around for insurance, GEICO was about 20% lower than the
> closest competitor... ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

> ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Not for me. I was quoted almost 2 times higher than Nationwide, Statefarm,
and Metropolitan.
Well it has to do with the fact that I am not a US citizen.
The story goes like this...........
My current insurance is coming up for renewal next month so I said well
just check around to see if I could save some money.
Called up Statefarm and Metro. I wasn't going to call GEICO after seeing all
these postings about them, then the other day I said what the heck, just to
see what the quote would be. So I called up GEICO.
The lady was quite nice after putting me on hold for about 2-3 minutes.
Then came the usual questions....age? married? spouse age? type of cars?
any other drivers? any accident or ticket? etc.
Then the net heated question....Do you own a radar detector? no, I said,
since I don't own one.
She said 'good' and asked .......Are you a US citizen? ...I said what does that
have to do with insurance quote?
She said........its company policy. I said no.
She said........Are you a resident? I said yes.
She said .....thank you, I will have your quote in a minute.
After a minute. She said.....car 1 is $509, car 2 is 511.
I asked.......that is for 6 months? She.........yes sir.
I asked...... are you sure? She......yes, simply because you are not a
US citizen.
I asked......US citizens drive better and have less claims?
She.........it our company policy, sir, sorry.
I said....that's fine, thank you.


Chris Ng, who survived the 122F heat in Phoenix.

***** I do not speak for my employer, period. *****

ch...@ng.austin.ibm.com
or
...cs.utexas.edu:ibmchs!auschs!ng.austin.ibm.com!chris

Jason Allen Woods

unread,
Jan 21, 1992, 5:04:36 PM1/21/92
to
Rumor has it that there is a law-suit going on dealing with this.
Supposedly, some guy was tagged in his car by one of these laser guns
and it made his pacemaker fail. I wonder what DPS has to say about
that.

Also, how about the APD Sheriff that slammed into a car going across
an intersection Last weekend. SURELY he would have slowed down or at
least looked
around a little before flying across the intersection on his way to God
knows what.

We should feel REEAALLLLLLLL safe on the streets with all these
nice Policeman out there protecting us. Its not like crime is on the
decline and this is all they have to do now a days.

Take a hint guys, if you want to be respected, - do unto others as
you would have them do unto you.


Jason Woods - "Don't Just Sit There, Take A RISC"

P.S. - I ain't got nuttin to do wit da views of dis here big
corporation!

Frank Mayhar

unread,
Jan 22, 1992, 12:02:56 PM1/22/92
to
In article <15...@awdprime.UUCP>, ja...@jaws1.austin.ibm.com (Jason Allen Woods) writes:
|> Rumor has it that there is a law-suit going on dealing with this.
|> Supposedly, some guy was tagged in his car by one of these laser guns
|> and it made his pacemaker fail. I wonder what DPS has to say about
|> that.

I find this *extremely* hard to believe. How, pray tell, could a visible-light
or infrared laser *possibly* interfere with a pacemaker?
--
Frank Mayhar fma...@mpd.tandem.com
Tandem Computers, Inc. Micro Products Division
14231 Tandem Blvd., Austin, TX 78728 Phone: (512) 244-8969

John Bunda

unread,
Jan 22, 1992, 3:46:30 PM1/22/92
to
The interesting thing about infrared is the possibilities of jamming.
When radar detectors first came out, there were a few who experimented
with jammers, but of course the power output necessary to confuse
police radar made them expensive, and you a violator of FCC regs.

However, as far as I know, FCC has no jurisdiction over infrared light;
of course, they might try to get you on some kind of obstruction of
justice sort of thing if you had a box with no obvious purpose just
beaming infrared out your grill. On the other hand, if the component
prices get cheaper (which they'd have to if the units are to ever catch
on with the traffic cops) one could imagine a collision-avoidance
warning box (sort of like the Rashid radar systems for the same
purpose) that would play hell with the police system... Wouldn't
take much more than a smarter, higher-powered version of your TV
remote control, I'd think.

Of course, this is all speculation for its own sake, I would never
ever advocate interfering with enforcement of traffic laws. I always
drive the speed limit and never flash my lights unless I'm in the left
lane behind Robert Dorsett), etc. etc. etc.
--
John Bunda * bu...@cs.utexas.edu * {uunet,harvard}!cs.utexas.edu!bunda

Allen Kitchen

unread,
Jan 22, 1992, 1:42:23 PM1/22/92
to

Where did you hear about the 'Laser Bag' speed gun causing someone's
pacemaker to fail? There is no way that a low powered light will cause a
pacemaker to malfunction. He would be in greater danger from spurious RF
noise coming out of his car stereo.
I for one can't wait to hear the expert witnesses in this one 8{)

allen
ifa...@ccwf.cc.utexas.edu

Doug McLaren

unread,
Jan 23, 1992, 6:31:50 AM1/23/92
to
In article <15...@awdprime.UUCP> ja...@jaws1.austin.ibm.com (Jason Allen Woods) writes:
-Rumor has it that there is a law-suit going on dealing with this.
-Supposedly, some guy was tagged in his car by one of these laser guns
-and it made his pacemaker fail. I wonder what DPS has to say about
-that.

Actually, I heard it was a *phaser* and he was totally disintegrated.

Seriously, there is no way a laser would mess up his pacemaker. Unless of
course, it burned through his chest first. I think somebody was pulling your
leg ...

Of course, people will sue anybody for any reason too ...

Jeff Bone

unread,
Jan 23, 1992, 1:45:46 PM1/23/92
to
-Rumor has it that there is a law-suit going on dealing with this.
-Supposedly, some guy was tagged in his car by one of these laser guns
-and it made his pacemaker fail. I wonder what DPS has to say about
-that.

>Seriously, there is no way a laser would mess up his pacemaker.


I understand these guns look alot like high-power rifles with big
scopes... maybe the guy didn't actually have a pacemaker, maybe
he actually just had a heart attack from seeing one of these puppies
aimed at him. ;) :)

Seems plausible.


--
---- jb...@Sun.COM --------------------------------------------------
------------------------------------------------------ Jeff Bone ----
--

ro...@moller3.austin.ibm.com

unread,
Jan 22, 1992, 10:35:19 AM1/22/92
to

In article <20...@rpp386.cactus.org>, j...@rpp386.cactus.org (John F
Haugh II) writes:

[....]

>
> .... concentrating on speeders is wasted effort.
>

Nothing wasted about it: it helps keep governments and insurance
companies rich.

Mindless moralisms such as "speed kills", WOD, Prohibition, and most
other govern-
mental attempts to keep perfectly ordinary people from doing perfectly ordinary
things have been around since two Neanderthals got together and decided that a
third Neanderthal should do things _their_ way. Fortunately, it
virtually never
works in the long run. Unfortunately, it causes a lot of people a lot of grief
in the process. And, refuting myself, it probably doesn't even make any money
for the Traffic Gestapo, the DEA, or Elliot Ness: it takes a lot of speeding
tickets to pay for the cop, the cop car, the radar, etc.

Most laws dealing with people as individuals (I can't speak for
corporate law) are
appallingly simplistic, in effect attempting to legislate away
unpleasant effects
of events rather than the causes of the events themselves. People who
use various
recreational drugs (apparently) commit more crimes than most; obviously
we have to
pass a lot more laws about using drugs. This is a bit like observing
that since
a lot of people get hurt falling off things, we have to make gravity illegal.

It never seems to occur to the average lawmaker to look for even the
most obvious
subtleties in human behavior. No one seems to consider the possiblity
that maybe
people have to commit crimes to support drug habits because the drugs are so
expensive, that they're expensive because they're scarce (at least with respect
to the demand), that they're scarce because they're illegal, that
they're illegal
because they make people commit crimes...

The same is true about a lot of normal activities. They make speed limits
ludicrously low, so lots of people ignore the limit, so the cops spend lots of
money on radars, so people spend lots of money on radar detectors, so the cops
spend lots of money on IR laser gadgets, so people spend lots of money on IR
detectors...

You _can't_ successfully, in the long run, impose laws on people unless
the people
on whom the laws are imposed support them. Regarding any law, the
average vidj has
to be able to say to himself "Yeah, I guess that law makes sense." When any
significant fraction of the population starts to ignore the law, or goes
(sometimes
expensively) out of its way to circumvent the law, the law is a failure. Laws
affecting individual human activities _must_ realisticlaly consider
normal human
behavior. Someday even politicians and insurance companies may get around to
noticing this.

If this be cynicism, make the most of it.

[...]

> --
> John F. Haugh II | Every 56 days. | UUCP:
...!cs.utexas.edu!rpp386!jfh
> Ma Bell: (512) 255-8251 | Give Blood, often. | Domain:
j...@rpp386.cactus.org
>
> HI ! I'm a mutating signature virus. You cannot resist helping me spread !

Ronald S. Woan

unread,
Jan 23, 1992, 8:41:23 PM1/23/92
to
In article <15...@awdprime.UUCP> ja...@jaws1.austin.ibm.com (Jason Allen Woods) writes:
>Rumor has it that there is a law-suit going on dealing with this.
>Supposedly, some guy was tagged in his car by one of these laser guns
>and it made his pacemaker fail. I wonder what DPS has to say about
>that.

Yeah right... Pray tell how a laser is going to make a pacemaker fail
from such a distance (or any distance for that matter).

>Also, how about the APD Sheriff that slammed into a car going across
>an intersection Last weekend. SURELY he would have slowed down or at
>least looked

Are you sure it was APD? Last time I looked, they don't have the rank of
sheriff...

>Take a hint guys, if you want to be respected, - do unto others as
>you would have them do unto you.

Personally, I think the police do a darn good job. Anyway, I have the
opportunity to ride with an APD officer during his shift this Friday,
so don't anyone cause any trouble... :-)

John Iacoletti

unread,
Jan 24, 1992, 10:48:02 AM1/24/92
to
In article <10...@cactus.org>, wo...@cactus.org (Ronald S. Woan) writes:

|> Anyway, I have the
|> opportunity to ride with an APD officer during his shift this Friday,
|> so don't anyone cause any trouble... :-)

Ron -- save me a doughnut! :-)

Ronald S. Woan

unread,
Jan 30, 1992, 1:43:34 AM1/30/92
to
In article <15...@awdprime.UUCP> joh...@hwperform.austin.ibm.com (John Iacoletti) writes:
>In article <10...@cactus.org>, wo...@cactus.org (Ronald S. Woan) writes:
>|> Anyway, I have the
>|> opportunity to ride with an APD officer during his shift this Friday,
>|> so don't anyone cause any trouble... :-)
>Ron -- save me a doughnut! :-)

Here's my report on a day in the life of a police officer... I rode with
Officer Jeff Koehler (sp?) of David Sector (south austin between the
river and Ben White, the interstate and South Lamar) for the evening shift
(8pm-6am). During that time we gave a warning to a couple of teenagers
"learning to drive a manual transmission" in the passenger's mother's
red sports car on Congress on a Friday night, yeah right... We pulled them
over for erratic driving, i.e. smoking rubber, stop and go. We ticketed
a pizza delivery man who ran a red light, right in front of us on Ben White;
his speakers covered the entire rear windows, so I don't think he could even
see that we were right behind him. We answered a relatively cordial family
disturbance call where the wife threatened to call the police if her husband
left the apartment. We caught one person making a getaway after a breakin
was reported at his former girlfriends apartment, and dragged him to jail
for criminal trespass and mischief. We took another person to jail after
investigaing a citizen's call of a suspicious truck that had the two right
tires blown out and the engine running for over two hours; we found a man
passed out in the back seat with some pills suspected to be valium in a
Tupperware container. Turns out he is an orthodontist going through a
divorce, etc... Too bad we didn't catch him driving or we would have
booked for driving while intoxicated... We answered a alarm call at
a Genie car wash, helped a person who had locked their keys in their trunk,
and took a runaway report from a distraught parent. The rest of the time
we spent cruising the housing projects (don't teenagers have anything better
to do than hang out in the yards on a Friday night?).

We/Jeff spent three hours on the watch that night sitting at the police
statements filing the affidavits necessary for arresting the two we
had brought in... All in all a very quiet night for us. On the same night,
a traffic arrest turned up a person with a $15000 arrest warrant in Dallas
for counterfeiting, a fight was broken up at Mirage, individuals were
arrested for drag racing on Ben White, a firearm was recovered during a
drug dealing altercation...

By the way, Jeff said in Texas that as long as you had entered the
intersection before the light hits red, you are OK legally. Also when
rushing to calls, we only turned on the lights as we slowed for
intersections. During the ten hour period we stopped only once for
roughly ten minutes to go to the bathroom at 7-11 and get some coffee;
no meals. For those interested in armament, Jeff carried a Glock
9mm semi-auto with two extra clips, I believe, which he paid for as
APD hasn't got enough of the Smith&Wesson 9mm to go around, and no one
wants the traditional revolver though you have to attend training to
carry 9mms.

For those interested in gaining a better understanding of APD, I encourage
you to sign up for their free ten week community outreach education
program called the Citizen's Police Academy which I am currently
attending 7-9:30pm each tuesday night at the Police Training Academy
in South Austin. The next session starts in a few months...

John F Haugh II

unread,
Jan 31, 1992, 11:46:40 AM1/31/92
to
In article <10...@cactus.org> wo...@cactus.org (Ronald S. Woan) writes:
> For those interested in armament, Jeff carried a Glock
>9mm semi-auto with two extra clips, I believe, which he paid for as
>APD hasn't got enough of the Smith&Wesson 9mm to go around, and no one
>wants the traditional revolver though you have to attend training to
>carry 9mms.

Which brings up an interesting concept I dreamt up recently. Would anyone
be interested in starting a charitable bank account to buy high-capacity
semi-automatic weapons for police officers? One of the complaints by law
enforcement officers is that they are stuck carrying pistols with far less
capacity (accuracy, etc.) than their opponents and that they can't afford
to buy nice new Glocks like their drug running foes ...

The notion is that citizens would contribute to the fund and police would
win handguns either through a raffle or based on the recommendations of
their superiors and other citizens. The winning officer would be told how
much was available that month for a weapon and would get to buy the firearm
of their choice. If enough money is raised it would be a self-maintaining
fund.

Is this too hare-brained or what?


--
John F. Haugh II | Every 56 days. | UUCP: ...!cs.utexas.edu!rpp386!jfh

Ma Bell: (512) 251-2151 | Give Blood, often. | Domain: j...@rpp386.cactus.org

SigVirusGuard 1.1: Don't Post News Without It! [ now in handy mail size too! ]

Frank Mayhar

unread,
Jan 31, 1992, 12:45:38 PM1/31/92
to
In article <10...@cactus.org>, wo...@cactus.org (Ronald S. Woan) writes:
|> Here's my report on a day in the life of a police officer... [...]

|> We took another person to jail after
|> investigaing a citizen's call of a suspicious truck that had the two right
|> tires blown out and the engine running for over two hours; we found a man
|> passed out in the back seat with some pills suspected to be valium in a
|> Tupperware container. Turns out he is an orthodontist going through a
|> divorce, etc... Too bad we didn't catch him driving or we would have
|> booked for driving while intoxicated...

Well, that _is_ just too damn bad, isn't it? While you were at it, why didn't
you pull out the rubber hoses? Having recently gone through a divorce myself,
I have little sympathy for someone who would make an impossible situation any
more difficult. What was he charged with, criminal despondency? Malicious
depression?

Sorry, having recently gone through a divorce myself, I have *much* more
sympathy for the poor sap they took to jail than for the cop.

|> The rest of the time
|> we spent cruising the housing projects (don't teenagers have anything better
|> to do than hang out in the yards on a Friday night?).

Odds are, they don't. Don't you have anything better to do than hassle them?

|> For those interested in armament, Jeff carried a Glock
|> 9mm semi-auto with two extra clips, I believe, which he paid for as
|> APD hasn't got enough of the Smith&Wesson 9mm to go around, and no one
|> wants the traditional revolver though you have to attend training to
|> carry 9mms.

Why, in a little town like Austin, do the cops think they need 9mm
semi-automatic pistols? In LA, maybe (_maybe_) I can understand it, but in
Austin? Nothing like arming our so-called "defenders" to the teeth.

Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against police, per se. At their best,
they perform a valuable function, and often do it heroically. At less than
their best though, they can be as dangerous as the "criminals" they are
"protecting" us from. Perhaps more so.

Louis Marco

unread,
Feb 2, 1992, 2:22:31 PM2/2/92
to
In article <20...@rpp386.cactus.org> j...@rpp386.cactus.org (John F Haugh II) writes:
>starting a charitable bank account to buy high-capacity semi-automatic
>weapons for police officers? Is this too hare-brained or what?

Too hare-brained. Hell, if we're going to buy these guys weapons,
I think we should just buy 'em each a dozen hand grenades. That way they
won't have to worry about _almost_ hitting the bad guys or being pinned
down by Uzi-wielding marijuana addicts.

Hand grenades, yeah, that's the ticket.
wr

Mark Brown

unread,
Feb 6, 1992, 11:35:18 AM2/6/92
to
>>Why, in a little town like Austin, do the cops think they need 9mm
>>semi-automatic pistols? In LA, maybe (_maybe_) I can understand it, but in
>>Austin? Nothing like arming our so-called "defenders" to the teeth.

Perhaps because Austin ain't such a little town anymore.

9mm is *my* defense weapon of choice, I'd be worried if the police were
limited to less (followups to rec.guns, I guess).


--
Mark Brown IBM PSP Austin, TX.| The Truth will be out this morning.
(512) 838-3926 VNET: MBROWN@AUSVMQ|
MAIL: mbr...@testsys.austin.ibm.com | (Which may really mess things up!)
DISCLAIMER: My views may be, and often are, independent of IBM official policy.

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