It wasn't that long ago that courts ruled that cops were legally permitted to pull drivers over and issue speeding tickets without verifying speeds by radar. Currently, if a police officer thinks your pedal is too close to the metal, that's good enough to turn on the sirens and nab you.
The fundamental problems with the "eyeball" test are obvious enough that we don't need to recount them here. And thankfully some lawmakers in Columbus are finally taking action so that Officer Barney will have to rely on more than his keen eye to make sure you're exceeding the speed limit.
"In 2010 troopers issued nearly 80,000 traffic citations that were for 20 mph over the posted speed limit," said Ohio State Highway Patrol Lt. Gary Lewis. "We utilize radar, laser. We have the opportunity to utilize the aircraft."
But officers do not have to use any high-tech device to write speeding tickets.
Under Ohio law, if police think a motorist is speeding, they can be pulled over, Frazer reported.
Under the proposed law, officers could no longer depend on what they see. Instead they would have to use a radar gun or other device to catch motorists in the act, Frazer reported.
Rep. Barbara Sears is sponsoring the bill. She said her office has received complaints about officers issuing tickets based solely on visual observation.
"It's still going to be business as usual for us; still making that first visual observation and having that speed verified by the electronic speed monitoring device," Lewis said. "The bottom line is speed kills and we have to get the public to do their part and drive the posted speed limit."
Or at least driving the posted speed limit when you see a trooper with a radar gun.