Picture of a burnt out speed camera from the UK.
As many of you know the UK is camera happy. The only problem is the UK residents are not too happy about the cameras. They are a good source of revenue if they don’t end up like this one but they don’t prevent crime and may actually encourage it. The cost to install this camera is anywhere from 20K to 40K Sterling depending on location. Revenue stream from these cameras is unknown but that’s an awful lot of tickets to be paid for this camera to break even. Assuming it doesn’t end up like this of course. I believe this particular camera is now on it’s third replacement.
This weekend, in Ireland, one of the fleet of 15 mobile speed traps was fire bombed. The Van and equipment was worth 50K Euros. It was firebombed at 4 AM and fortunately the operator of the vehicle woke up in time to get out of the van. Apparently it was the smell of the smoke that alerted him and not the sound of the driver side window being smashed or the sound of the gasoline being poured in through the window as he was sleeping it off in the back of the van. I guess even in the most drunken slumber the subconscious will eventually kick in and alert you to life threatening situations.
So why should you care what those crazy European people do? What happens in Europe will happen here eventually. It just takes a little longer. Illinois, Jersey, Florida have already started on their austerity measures. The Jersey Governor fired a bunch of cops in Newark. If you have ever been to Newark you would know this is probably not going to end well.
What do cops do what do when their livelihood is threatened by budget cuts? Well they don’t have bake sales that’s for sure. Expect to see a lot more speed traps as states get more and more strapped for cash. Then it will be the traffic light cameras, then it will be the traffic lights timer change the orange light from 5 seconds to 3 seconds and all captured on film as you make the mistake of thinking you have enough time to zip through. Then we will start with the gasoline doused burning tires around the cameras.
Where there was one speed trap on the commute from Jersey to Manhattan in the morning now there are five. As the states find themselves more and more stressed financially expect more budget cuts and expect more and more measures from the state employees trying to keep their budgets whole.