E. Washington St, from McDowell to Petaluma N. Blvd
On 1/31/12 I posted a Petaluma speed trap location. This is a follow up and the Sonoma County Superior Court speeding violation case held on 3/7/12. After 6 months of research I submitted a legal brief with documentation proving that the Petaluma DPW Engineering and Traffic study which set the 30 mph limit was invalid. Commissioner Ornell took the case under advisement and ruled Not Guilty.
There is a strict methodology for doing Engineering and Traffic Studies. Many local communities, Rhonert Park, Santa Rosa and even Petaluma when they choose to do so follow the correct methodology. Speed studies must be done on Off-Peak hours between 9am-4pm during Free Flow traffic conditions. The E. Washington 2009 Traffic study was conducted at 8:15am-8:40am. Documentation was submitted from local DPW Engineers verfying Off-Peak methodology. Previous Speed studies on E. Washington set the limit at 35mph. It was lowered to 30 mph as a justification for alledged increase in vehicular collisions. Interestingly the records obtained through the Ca. Public Records Act do not conclusively verify that. Local communities are under intense pressure to raise revenue due to economic conditions. The Petaluma City Council and Police Department rubber stamped the 2009 Speed Study without giving it a second thought.
I would strongly suggest anyone receiving a speeding violation to look carefully at the Engineering and Traffic Study methodology in terms of when it was conducted.