• Apr 16, 2008
A pair of Pittsburgh Revenue Officers misunderstood the rules surrounding the use of some LIDAR gear loaned to the department for testing and issued a raft of tickets that the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police now has to retract. Apparently LIDAR is only approved for use when teamed with other systems like VASCAR and ENRADD, which measure speed in different ways, and these boys in blue were using it solo. Their mistake instantly invalidates about 650 speeding fines that were issued on account of the loaned LIDAR equipment.
Pittsburgh police chief Nate Harper has apologized for the erroneous tickets, and motorists with LIDAR-only tickets were encouraged to request a court hearing. If the citation has already been paid, the unlawfully caught speeders will be reimbursed. A full refund for a speeding ticket is novel, but our sarcastic side wants to make a crack about the payouts being funded by shortening yellow lights at intersections with camera-bots. Thanks for the tip, Eddy!

[Source: WTAE, Photo: nist.gov]


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  • 16 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      Shush keep it down you'll destroy the universe.
      bolo
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'm wondering whether they ALL have been using Lidar to write the tickets, but only two officers were foolish enough to write that on the ticket. Needs some investigation.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Our streets still suck...

        • 6 Years Ago
        I live in North Western Michigan. I JUST drove through the entire state of PA from NJ - OH.. PA roads for the most part are exponentially better than the roads here in Michigan. I was on I78, I80, 33, and many other side roads.

        I actually wondered how our roads could be so bad compared to PA. I understand we had a GREAT winter, but the roads were already so bad that this winter just put the final nail in the coffin.. but i think our governor's plan on creating new jobs and maintaing jobs is to make sure we bust the crap out of our cars so we have to pay to get them fixed or buy new ones.

        GENIUS PLAN! Our governor rocks (rocks those who have their hands out anyways).
        • 6 Years Ago
        Not as bad as Michigan's....I've lived in both places....Michigan's are horrible.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I don't see a practical or moral difference between laser measured revenue ticketing and the distance over time measured revenue ticketing methods they were supposed to use instead.

      Revenue tickets thrown away for any reason are a step in the right direction though.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Shush keep it down you'll destroy the universe.
      Reggie
      • 6 Years Ago
      It's also entirely possible that the manufacturer didn't make it entirely clear that the LIDARS which they loaned to the city for training purposes, were to be used ONLY for that (i.e. go out and train and practice with it) but don't take it out and use it for actual law enforcement purposes without the other systems up and running with it.
      • 6 Years Ago
      That's really cool that Pittsburgh would do that and also take care of the insurance part of it. Kudos to Pittsburgh!
      • 6 Years Ago
      On loan...from the insurance company that owns the manufacturer of the guns no doubt..
      • 6 Years Ago
      Is this part of the system which looks like a field goal post in the median and on the side of the road? There was a section of road in the south side of Pittsburgh in which people were getting nailed once a week for about two months straight. I'm wondering if it was LIDAR or something else.
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