Pacificus does not have the infrastructure to appropriately enforce foto radar.
The province of Ontario, Canada, experimented with photo radar a couple of decades ago, and while the program produced a great deal of revenue, and presumable reduced traffic accidents, its detractors won over and after about a year it disappeared. Debate continues, however, as to whether or not it should once again be instituted.
Throughout the short-lived existence of Ontario’s photo radar program, vehicle owners would receive a speeding ticket in the mail, and were required to pay it within a specified period of time, failing which the face amount would increase. One could not renew one’s vehicle plates without paying the photo radar (and other) traffic violation fines. In Ontario, without up-to-date plates, vehicles are regularly pulled over and fines increase, driving suspensions can be imposed, and so on.
By contrast, in Pacificus license plate renewal is essentially not enforced. Vehicles are on the roadways which have not had their plates renewed since 2008 or earlier. Many vehicles are simply driven without plates at all. Sometimes vehicles exchange hands without the registration of formal paperwork. Accordingly, it is unlikely that a fine in the mail will be paid by many car and truck owners. Why should they pay, since they are not motivated to renew their plates in the first place, and they can sell their vehicles without changing the registration?
Most regular roadways in downtown and suburban Pacificus do not have posted speed limits, so on balance drivers simply do not know the law. By contrast, for example, in Toronto, Ontario, the law states that unless otherwise posted, the speed limit in the city is X kilometers per hour. In any event signs are generally posted in Toronto. Drivers in Pacificus are not really required to know the law in terms of speed limits, since they obtain a drivers’ license without taking a written or on-road test. Most jurisdictions which have a drivers’ test requirement, such as Ontario, distribute a booklet free of charge with the rules of the road clearly stated so as to assist prospective licensees in studying for and passing the required exam.
Unlike in virtually all of Canada and the United States, in Pacificus there does not appear to be any rhyme or reason for many maximum speed postings on the inter town and city highways. One can see a sign stating 40 KPH, then a kilometer or two down the road 80, then 60, then 30, and then up to 80. It is as if the project engineer along a stretch of highway gave a slew of speed limit signs to his workers and told them to erect them, without telling them which sign goes where.
A Rationale for photo radar in Ontario was to free up police for other work.
Pacificus has far too many traffic police officers standing around doing either nothing or very little relative to their job descriptions. They are employed in order to give people work in this fairly poor kingdom. They earn an extremely paltry sum of money relative to the working and middle classes. What will these police officers now do, when stopping vehicles for speeding is no longer in their job description? They used to augment their lowly wage “on the street” taking bribes, but how will they now increase their salaries when they will no longer be stopping drivers for speeding? Their employment cannot be terminated, because that would increase the already high level of unemployment.
Part of Pacificus is still of course under water, making driving even more precarious. But there are intersections in the kingdom completely above water, in clear need of traffic lights because they are in school zones. Yet some mornings there is not an officer to be found directing traffic or children across the street, and other mornings there are six at an intersection flailing their arms and blowing their whistles. This relates back to infrastructure.
What are the police doing if not protecting the children of Pacificus? Will they now be spending more time at such intersections? Let’s hope so, failing which Pacificus may sink back to the status of its sister kingdom Atlantis.
Pacificus has a big problem with alcoholism, and its associated driving while impaired (under the influence). The problem is that for generations the locals have been distilling fermented Pacific salmon, a cheap and readily available commodity, and thus consumers have been able to buy it for the equivalent of $3 USD per liter. It has been far too easy for Pacificites to become inebriated. Police which could have been enforcing this law, have not traditionally done so, despite the fact that there has been a large force available for this purpose. Will more police not enforcing speeding lead to more spot checks seeking out drunken drivers? Let’s hope so.
Speed kills. This has been the primary rationale for instituting photo radar in Canada, and foto radar in Pacificus.
Speed bumps have been the most successful means of controlling the speed at which Pacificus vehicles travel, at least since it has arisen from the Pacific depths and amphibious vehicles have been replaced with traditional gasoline and diesel powered cars and trucks. Why not install more speed bumps? The success of brake, muffler and other related vehicle repair shops has certainly been a boon for the economy.
Yes, speed bumps impede the fluidity of traffic movement, and the government of Pacificus has noted this. It has stated that with foto radar, speed bumps might be able to be removed, or less of them installed. Ambulances will more easily be able to get to their destinations and accordingly more lives will be saved.
But Pacificus has a much more serious problem with traffic flow than that which speed bumps cause. On a regular basis interest groups blockade roadways and major city intersections. Police and government simply permit this to happen, and in fact the former attempt to direct traffic around the actions of the protesters. Many residents of the kingdom of Pacificus simply cannot get to their intended destinations, and so they leave their vehicles on the streets, and dive back under the ocean and swim home. Ambulance drivers cannot do this because of the life-saving equipment they carry in their vehicles. So the foto radar rationale of improving the fluidity of traffic movement does not appear to hold water without the institution of a plan to keep Pacificus blockade-free. Query, how many residents of the kingdom have died because of speed bumps compared to blockades?
Upon formally announcing to the media the institution of Pacificus foto radar, government administration promulgated new maximum speed laws where speed control by radar is being employed. In many of those zones, maximum speeds have been increased, including close to sports fields, churches, hospitals, schools, and other high pedestrian traffic areas. Government states that speed kills and thus we must enforce limits to protect the populace. Why then increase the speed in certain “high risk” zones of Pacificus? If 25 KPH was inhibiting accidents and fatalities in front of schools previously, how many children and their parents will now die as a consequence of increasing the speed to 35 KPH?
Foto radar in Pacificus benefits few and leaves the population at large yearning for the good old days of propelling oneself only as quickly as fins and tail could muster.
Politicians and their functionaries in Pacificus have a plan. They have always had one, even long before their figured out a way to lift the continent onto dry land. It’s to institute as many public works projects during the currency of their elected administrations, so as to enable them to line their own pockets. Buy equipment, erect signs, and convince the people that it is for the good of society.
What will be the fallout of photo radar in Pacificus? The responsible citizenry will be fined for driving 6 KPH over the speed limit. This is what happened in Ontario and was one of the factors which lead to the dismantling of the program. In Pacificus, the middle class which had previously been renewing their license plates may very well get fed up with fines resulting from the foto radar program, and just not bother renewing. After all, hardly anyone ever gets pulled over for driving a vehicle with expired plates. Pacificus could very well end up with less revenue in the kingdom coffer than previously.
Residents of Pacificus would be well-advised to dive into the ocean and swim ashore to a jurisdiction where foto radar actually works, for the sole benefit and safety of the populace at large.
Alvin Starkman operates Mezcal Educational Excursions of Oaxaca (http://www.mezcaleducationaltours.com), in southern Mexico.