• Feb 22, 2011
The weather is finally beginning to turn warm in parts of our great nation, and with spring looming, plenty of people have an eye on scratching their road trip itch. Before you take to any wide-open expanse of tarmac, it might be worth taking some time to note some of the worst speed traps in the country. Yahoo Autos has gone through the trouble of ranking the top 10 cities with the worst speed traps in the U.S., and while no one should be surprised to see that Los Angeles, California has claimed the number 10 spot, there are a few surprises on the list.

Colorado Springs, Colorado managed to break into the top five with a number four ranking. The locality boasts a heady 186 speed traps, and local law enforcement says that they're happy to write citations for drivers who exceed the limit by 1-4 mph. But it was Texas that took the cake by driving away with three of the 10 spots, including the top two. Austin took the silver metal with 189 traps, while Houston was crowned the speed trap capital of our nation with a staggering 373 hotspots. Head over to Yahoo Autos to check out the full list.

[Source: Yahoo Autos | Image: Mark Wilson/Getty]


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      • 3 Years Ago
      I'm surprised to see Houston taking the top spot - I've lived here for nearly six years and in that time I've seen maybe half a dozen motorists pulled over on the side of the highway for speeding. Speed limits on most highways in the county are 60, although 70-75 tends to be the typical speed of traffic.
      • 3 Years Ago
      More safety or more revenue.
      • 3 Years Ago
      I've visited both Houston and Austin before, I have to say that I have never seen so many accidents on a freeway at one time. I live in Los Angeles where accidents should be the norm. My only guess is that people freak out when they see a cop and hit the brakes causing an accident. Every time I went out in Houston there was an accident. I'm not surprised at all they have the most speed traps, I would see the police at least twice on a short drive.
      In LA at least, they give you some leeway on how fast you're going. Most of the time if you're going the flow of traffic (10mph over the limit) you're OK. Usually, the highway patrol will pass me because they are going even faster.
      • 3 Years Ago
      You elect the people that make the laws you so detest us enforcing. Here's and idea, observe the posted speed limit. Pay attention to the road and you won't miss those signs. They are there for a reason.

      You can't be the victim of a "speedtrap" if you aren't speeding. Man up and take the ticket, and quit whining.

      • 3 Years Ago
      That cop in the pic seems to have a bad back sweating issue.
        • 3 Years Ago
        LOL.
        probably a shadow
        • 3 Years Ago
        Im pretty sure its an angry dinosaur thats going to eat the cop. Dinosaurs speed too.
        • 3 Years Ago
        It's a shadow. The entire scene is underneath a partial shadow.
      • 3 Years Ago
      What a scam. This makes me sick.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Hey, you know if we took some of these (traffic) officers and place them in bad neighborhoods...crime might just go down...
        • 3 Years Ago
        Because speeding isn't a crime? I know what you're getting at, but I wish they would write more tickets for red-light runners, double parkers and people who block the box here, causing increased congestion.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Speeding is a crime, to a degree. If you're going well above the speed limit, like say 15 mph or more, then I would agree. However, some speed limits just seem so slow for the area, and 10 mph faster wouldn't be much of a hazard.

        Example:
        There's a road back home that's a split 4-lane, with a stoplight every couple miles and not many side streets. It's only 55mph speed limit. Heck, when it turns into a freeway (no stop lights), it still is 55mph. Now a road closer to home is also a split 4 lane, but the stop lights are a bit closer together and there are many side streets and businesses along the road. The speed limit is 60. Makes no sense to me.
      • 3 Years Ago
      The one thing the article doesn't mention are those 2 words that every Texan with a heavy right foot learns 'deferred adjudication'; meaning you get a ticket, you pay the fine and if you keep your nose clean for 90-180 days (judge's call) the ticket is off your record.

      Personally I had a real extreme example of this; it was a Friday, near 5PM and I had to get to a vendor to pick up something and was pulled over on the highway, outskirts of Houston for doing 103 in a 70 (again very stupid on my part). With no attorney I pleaded not contest, asked for def adj, even though you aren't eligible at 15mph above the speed limit. And was fined $500 and 180 days and granted deferred adjudication.
      • 3 Years Ago
      "Jayson Luber, the traffic reporter for 7News at ABC affiliate KMGH, said officers will even wait for drivers riding in the exit lane who dart back into other lanes at the last minute, and nab them for crossing a white line."

      Good. I really believe cops need to be out enforcing all the driving laws, and not just speeding. People making last second corrections and diving back onto the highway are likely to be a higher cause of wrecks then someone going 5 over the limit on the same highway. Start enforcing following distances, turn signal usage, and proper lane usage, and maybe driving won't be so stressful. Really tired of watching F150 drivers park themselves in the far left lane of a freeway, then swerving across 3 lanes and a solid white line to get off at an exit.
        • 3 Years Ago
        The federal standards for highways say that a driver must not cross a solid white line if it is on the driver side, and it is discouraged if it is on the passenger side.
        • 3 Years Ago
        I could be wrong, but I thought that crossing a double white line was illegal and a single was discouraged. Atlanta's HOV lanes have signs that say it is illegal to cross the double white and you must wait until it is skipped striped to merge in and out of the lane. I have never seen a sign for any single white line. Again I could be wrong.
      • 3 Years Ago
      I have no idea how Austin ended up on the list. I've lived here for over two and a half years and hardly ever see police sitting radaring people. Maybe they do on 35 which I never travel on. They seem in fact to leave people alone for the most part from what I can tell. I was pulled over once for an expired inspection sticker, 11 months expired, and the officer was extremely courteous and quickly sent me on my way. On the other hand I moved here from Massachusetts. It seemed all the police do there is wait on the side of the road to pull you over. Then when they do they go out of their way to intimidate and belittle you.
      • 3 Years Ago
      No.
      • 3 Years Ago
      The fix for this problem (and yes, for all of you "just drive at or below the speed limit" parrots out there, this IS a problem) is not to let the cities keep revenue generated from moving traffic violations. It goes in to a state coffer that is then used for road improvements across the state. If the cities can't keep the revenue, they will be much less inclined to stake out these easy money speed traps, and we'll see law enforcement of speeding drop back down to where it should be.
        • 3 Years Ago
        If speed limits were set to match the typical flow of traffic, most people wouldn't be speeding.
        • 3 Years Ago
        How do you "remove the revenue incentive" from law enforcement?

        What other penalties do you suggest drivers be given to dissuade them from breaking the law while driving? Yes speeding is breaking the law, we can debate on the severity, but it's still driving outside the law period.

        I guarantee you that someone who gets a $100 fine for speeding is going to think twice about it next time compared to one who is given just a couple of points off their license.

        I live in Colorado Springs and I'm honestly very surprised to see it on this list. I've never heard of a single person getting a ticket for going 1-4mph over and I personally drive about 5-10mph virtually everywhere and I haven't had a ticket in many years. I don't even see cops on the roadside hardly. Driving the Interstate on my way to work, I'm typically doing 10mph over, still being passed by half the cars on the road and I see a speed trap maybe a few times a month.

        The city did recently install some red light cameras at a few troubled intersections. They have not messed with the yellow light timing at all and the cameras have resulted in some healthy returns for the city. The cameras also video record the event so that the accused can fight the ticket if they wish. I've not yet heard of how many fight them and how many win, the cameras have only been in use for about 6mos. I'm personally all for that, if there's one thing I can't stand it's red light running.

        I also spend a fair amount of time in Denver(also on the list) and I feel the same about it except I can drive even faster on the Interstate through Denver and still be passed by the majority of cars on the road. I also hardly see speed traps in Denver as well. if these are considered some of the worst cities, I'm not concerned at all.

        I think their reporting methods for this story are quite suspect, here's a quote from the story about Colorado Springs:
        - "wide roads are often slapped with a 25 mph limit and entering the city from the southeast, one motorist notes, the speed limit drops quickly from 55 to 25" -

        I can call BS completely on that, I know exactly what they're talking about. When you come into the city, you often see signs letting you know that if a speed limit sign is not otherwise posted, the limit is 25mph. This is so that they don't have to post a speed limit sign on every little road in the city. The signs do look a lot like Speed Limit signs but if you read them(I guess that's asking too much) they clearly state the intent. The signs are not telling you that the limit is dropping form 55 to 25mph in that area. I can't think of a single road in the city where that would be true.
        • 3 Years Ago
        montoym - A few years ago I got a ticket for 2 mph over in Colorado Springs. It was truly annoying as it didn't come with any points and taking the time off work to fight it would have cost more than paying the ticket.
        • 3 Years Ago
        mighty.mouse,

        That might be part of the problem, but a lot of it really is all the people doing 10+ over the speed limit. I get sick of being tailgated while doing a couple mph over the speed limit.

        Although the part of the article mentioning cops giving tickets for 1-4 mph over, I'd agree that's a low blow.
        • 3 Years Ago
        I'd like to bring up one other thing. In some places this "work" qualifies for additional police hazard pay. On top of that, their pensions are based on an average for a defined period prior to retirement. So anything to artificially boost those numbers is desirable. Combine this the pressure to generate revenue, and it's pretty clear that police are not there to protect and serve anything more than their own financial interests.
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