Childress, Texas Speed Traps
Was in the right lane driving 74mph about a 1/4 of a mile behind another vehicle who swerved & hit their brakes when they seen the police (I assume). They may have been half asleep, texting, talking….whatever. Nevertheless, I immediately moved to the left lane, passed them, & kept it moving. The police pulled out, driving behind them first, then eventually pulled me over!! The reason was…. “drove left lane not passing”. I was so confused as I attempted to explain to the officer if he saw me in the left lane, then surely he had to have seen the car that swerved- thus the reason why I was in the left lane anyway!! Nevertheless, I decided that battle was not worth fighting for several reasons.
I’d been travelling from Colorado back home to Texas, in a rental car. The Toyota RAV4 has this cool feature that allows you to set your speed and which automatically slows you down (using radar somehow) if you get too close to another vehicle. I’d been using this almost exclusively for the entire trip at the posted speeds so I could avoid the accidental speeding that almost everyone does.
So, the shorter version is that I got a ticket for going 93 mph even though my cruise control was set at 75 mph! That is an 18 mph error! Just to be clear, I paid the ticket because driving 5 hours back to court to contest the ticket is not happening; not because I was guilty.
At the time I do not recall any car whizzing past me, so I feel pretty sure that the officer did not mistake my vehicle for another similar car (although mine was a plain white SUV, very common).
I’d been using this cruise control for over 16 hours of driving, and always with the flow of traffic, generally the same speed, only rarely passing, but always under the limit. I’d had a couple of occasions of driving around highway patrol, without any notice. That does not prove the accuracy of the cruise control, but there is no way the cruise control was off by 18 mph!
A Theory: There are lots of reasons for a radar to provide erroneous readings, but I wondered if the RAV4 collision avoidance radar might have been interfering with the accuracy of the police radar. Radar uses the echo of a “ping” (output radio wave pulse) to determine speed. If my car is also actively pinging for my collision avoidance, I wonder if that impacts the timing and result of the officer’s speed radar. I assume there is some encoding to prevent this kind of thing, but I only mention my theory in case someone has come across a similar experience.
I do support the Blue, I want to believe this was an error of equipment or training, not abuse of public trust. So, even if this is an honest error, it was an expensive error for me. A speed trap is still a trap whether intentional or not.
Constable hides in the dark and waits for someone to drive above the posted speed limit, which is 75 mph. Received a speeding ticket while passing an 18 wheeler. This guy has had numerous complaints against his tactics, he gives no warnings.
Officer sits behind a concrete partition at cement plant on south side of 287, about 1/4 mile from east city limits, can not see him if going east until too late, and you better drive speed limit thru this town, or you will get stopped, lot of new younger cops.
Officers set just south of Hospital at oxygen supply facility on west side of 83. They catch people easily coming from the north, driving south because of a hill just north of where they sit, and the speed limit changes right in that area. Be aware of this location.