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Doing 70 on the 154


Saturday, October 13, 2012
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I find myself viewing the numerous Highway Patrol officers stationed at the speed trap on Hwy 154 just above Cathedral Oaks Rd. with cynicism. I realize the county needs revenue and this is a way for them to get quick bucks. However, I sure don’t see the CHP patrolling the 101 corridor between Glen Annie and Carpinteria to curb the people who speed aggressively, weaving dangerously between traffic lanes, driving right on top of the car in front of them, or tootling along at 45 mph when everyone around them is doing 65 to 70 mph.

Coming down the San Marcos Pass, you go through the dip at San Antonio Creek, then have to climb up the hill. Cresting the hill you are often doing 65 to 70 without even knowing it because the road conditions are so good and most cars are quiet and aerodynamic. Just coasting down the hill with your foot off the accelerator you will be doing 60, and you’ll have to use the brake to do that, even, if you start out at the 55 mph speed limit. At that spot, you are a perfect target for radar.

It seems an abuse of power.  It’s concentrating manpower away from the job officers are actually supposed to be doing, and I fear people are losing respect for the CHP  because it is not done to keep the driving public safe, it is done solely to garner income. Or perhaps I just have a jaundiced eye.

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Independent Discussion Guidelines

Remember the country we live in. Capitalist, corporatist, plutocratic. If safety, protect and serve were paramount, we would not have insurance companies and broker middle men in the 'health' care (business?). Unfortunately it is not against the law to falsely advertise when you are of the government or attempting at winning one of their jobs, unless it is not an elected position in which case you might get thrown in jail or fined for lying on your application.

spacey (anonymous profile)
October 13, 2012 at 2:32 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I travel the 154 six days per week going into work and I can tell you with first hand experience that speeding along the entire area is absolutely an epidemic. Speeding, and following too closely are out of control.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
October 13, 2012 at 3:12 p.m. (Suggest removal)

The 154 is notoriously dangerous due to the way people drive (primarily way too fast). I avoid taking the pass if possible for that very reason. And yet you are complaining because there is... too much law enforcement... enforcing the law?

Perhaps they are there precisely because it's such a dangerous stretch of road? No? Don't buy it? Consider this: could the CHP use that corridor to "garner income" if people weren't so reliably breaking the law there?

I'm going to let that sink in. Meanwhile I'll assume you are just angry about your ticket.

Sothep (anonymous profile)
October 14, 2012 at 3:18 a.m. (Suggest removal)

I think you need to be less emotional and look at the statistical information on the traffic accident frequency rates and DUI offenses on the 154 HWY and where the money is really coming from to patrol the 154 HWY. So this is not income driven, as far as insurance companies go. They decide when you are an adult based on the same statistical information and they quantify it by discrete age demographics. You are considered an adult at the age of 25 years, when you get that first insurance reduction after being a good student.
Parking enforcement is where all the money is for cities and counties because they get all the money. Don’t think that your speeding ticket even pays for itself, by the time it has gone through all the administrative channels of distribution, there is little money left for the state.
The 154 HWY is dangerous; people don’t even turn on their headlights. Tickets could be written for that all day. The grants to reduce accidents are aimed at the primary collision factors and causes of injury. So slow down and turn on your lights, plan ahead too, because there may be a delay from a wreck.

jw (anonymous profile)
October 14, 2012 at 3:48 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I think that the level of deceit and lies you fine.upstanding members have shown is worse than anyone going to.the beach to.be a massage therapist or to school for keyboarding. You Hippocrates don't care if someone dies or goes insane as long as your agenda is fulfilled. I think the backstabbing way David's is coming and my.house to bea parking lot or.right of way is very shady. Sorry but wntmethis is a bigger disappoinment than y'all ever made me out to be. Have fun in Ft Worth.

rj_tool (anonymous profile)
October 14, 2012 at 5:48 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Hey rj_tool. Word salad much? The original poster is absolutely right. The placement of the speed trap makes clear that the CHP is punishing inadvertence in an area where there is no danger. They should be out patrolling for drunk drivers, not shooting fish in a barrel for easy money for the treasury.

cantyahearmeknocking (anonymous profile)
October 14, 2012 at 11:20 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Most of these officers go where the pickings are easiest. They just want to issue the most amount of citations in the shortest period of time. The more quickly and efficiently they do this, they can spend more of their patrol time relaxing, talking or doing other things.

They as individuals don't care about the income for the government, but they do care that their superiors expect a certain amount of productivity. Do you think they will spend their time looking for the most egregious violators? No way! They will go where the pickings are the easiest and quickest, then move on to more enjoyable and relaxing activities.

Botany (anonymous profile)
October 15, 2012 at 4:50 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Enough with the narrow Botany claims or others with claims about quotas and assertions about this being a "quick buck" money making scheme. It may be that the CHP chooses particular locations for various reasons including proximity to approaching high accident rate locations, to be a presence in the general area of concern, but also due their own safety concerns as well as the public safety when drivers are pulled over.

With little skill and without being distracted by interior cabin activity, daydreaming, amp'd up on whatever and/or exterior distractions, everyone should be able to judge distance, hills and the specificity of your cars horsepower and braking abilities to negotiated safely and within the posted signage for the safest allowed speed limit, even on hilly HWY 154. If you cannot do this then you shouldn't be driving.

DonMcDermott (anonymous profile)
October 15, 2012 at 6:37 a.m. (Suggest removal)

That's not a fair charactarization of my post Don. You should re-read what I said and retract your statement.

Botany (anonymous profile)
October 15, 2012 at 7:38 a.m. (Suggest removal)

To any highway patrol officer who tickets any idiot driving greater than 55 mph on Highway 154.

Thank you.

ramey (anonymous profile)
October 15, 2012 at 8:43 a.m. (Suggest removal)

ok, wow, I respect that Hwy 154 is a dangerous road. I hear sirens up and down it most weekends, as I live off the pass. My letter was referring only to the last hill down from just above Cathedral Oaks. It's posted there at 55. It is not a spot notorious for accidents. The exit to Cathedral Oaks is posted at 50 mph! Curves above are posted at 45 mph! If you exceed the speed limit there, it is simply due to inadvertence when there is no other traffic, not intentional speeding. I would submit that most people regulate their speed naturally as they come down the hill towards the intersection below. I've lived just off the pass for more than 26 years. The presence of Hwy Patrol cars at that small area has never been to the extent it has been over the past two years at that spot. Just saying.

LindseyParks (anonymous profile)
October 15, 2012 at 11:35 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Hilarious; a retraction request from a nuttier than a holiday fruitcake pseudonym.

LindseyParks; I think billclausen safely negotiates this route effectively and without getting tickets. Maybe you just need to brush up on braking or how to downshift into a lower gear. I think some of the signs posted are advisory (yellow signs.)

DonMcDermott (anonymous profile)
October 16, 2012 at 8:25 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Don - obviously, you care more about attitude than accuracy.

Botany (anonymous profile)
October 16, 2012 at 10:23 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Having read Parks' post I will respond. He/she may have a valid point about *where* the cops are busting people and as such, I will not dismiss Parks' comment. There are twists and turns where the speed limit goes up and down suddenly. My observations are based on the fact that overall, drivers are well in excess of the speed limit throughout the drive from Santa Ynez to Santa Barbara. (I am afraid to take the pass home at night from S.B. to S.Y)

I make it a point to be as close to the speed limit as possible--and this works both ways which is to say that I am very attentive to *not* holding up traffic by going slow, but it doesn't matter because even when I go the maximum speed limit the cars fly past me as though I'm parked when it breaks into two lanes, and accumulate behind me on the one-lane part of the road and when it finally breaks into two lanes, they scramble past me like dogs on a feeding frenzy even though I'm driving the maximum speed limit.

Most days, I pass no one, and I'd say the number of vehicles that speed past me probably are several dozen, and I almost never see anyone being pulled over. Occasionally, I see a CHP vehicle parked as a deterrent, and people will slow down, (of course) then when out of the officers' sights, will speed right up again. In short, the inmates are running the asylum of the 154.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
October 16, 2012 at 3:08 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Um, what's the hurry going down the hill, anyway? You'll just get to the red lights faster.

Walter (anonymous profile)
October 19, 2012 at 3:39 p.m. (Suggest removal)

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