Aug 24, 2007

but Jesus paid my toll, officer

When examining The Olympian's ill-informed support for Lacey's red light camera experiment, I never even mentioned the possibility of wrongful ticketing. The paper's "trust the government" stance doesn't go off quite as well in today's story about the new Tacoma Narrows toll bridge:
Bickle, who drives tractor-trailer rigs across the bridge on a regular basis, said he has a transponder in his rig, but got a ticket for the trailer. Sensors in the roadway are supposed to count tractor-trailer axles and automatically debit individual toll accounts for the correct amount.

"I really don't want to waste a day off to go fight a ticket I shouldn't have gotten in the first place," he said.

More than 12,000 tickets have been issued for failing to pay the $3 cash or $1.75 electronic toll on the bridge since the Washington State Patrol began enforcing toll violations July 22, a week after the bridge opened.

Most of those citations probably are legitimate, said Chuck Ramey, administrator for Pierce County District Court, which is processing the tickets.

But some aren't. And no one knows yet how many drivers have gotten tickets they don't deserve.
In its defense, at least the Lacey camera scheme provides an easy way to check and challenge a citation.

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