Nevada Politician Pitches $25 Passes To Let You Speed

from the budget-crunch dept

Via Slashdot, we find the story of Nevada gubernatorial candidate, Eugene "Gino" DiSimone, who is proposing a somewhat different idea for raising some extra money for the state: offering special "speeding" passes for $25 per day, which would let you drive up to 90 mph on designated highways. He claims it would raise $1 billion per year, which... seems extreme. If my math is correct (and it may not be), that means 40 million uses of this pass, meaning over 100,000 people using it every day. And those would have to be people who not only want to speed, but also figure $25 is worth it balanced against the likelihood of getting pulled over while just traveling 90 on your own. And it will only be allowed for vehicles that pass a special inspection and get a special transponder installed -- further limiting the number of folks who can use it.

Also, nowhere are the "costs" of such a program discussed. Not only will there be these extra inspections, the transponders will cost money, and there's technology infrastructure as well, including the ability to read the transponders, manage the database, set up the call-in system that will let people purchase the day pass, etc. The police are against the idea because they say it'll create more accidents, which some might argue isn't proven fact, but it probably does make their lives more complicated as well. Seems like this is more of an attempt to get some attention (oops, it worked) rather than any sort of serious proposal.


Reader Comments (rss)

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  1.  
    icon
    :Lobo Santo (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 1:55pm

    Dictionary Edit:

    The word "citizen" has been deprecated and is now considered archaic. Henceforth choose one of these more appropriate words: taxpayer, consumer.

     

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  2.  
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    jjmsan (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:02pm

    Liability

    There would also be a question if there were an accident if the state would share liability. After all, if the cause was excessive speed the state had given permission.

     

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  3.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:05pm

    Re: Liability

    How is it excesive if the state gave its permission?

     

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  4.  
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    :Lobo Santo (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:05pm

    Re: Liability

    sorry, but that's a load. The accident rates in places without speed limits are the exact same as the places which have speed limits.

     

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  5.  
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    Jay (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:19pm

    Sheer stupidity

    How the hell is that cost effective?

    First of all, I've lived in Nevada. Las Vegas to be exact. There's no way this would raise money in Vegas. The simple matter is that there's not enough ROAD to effectively speed through. If you're trying to get from Eastern to Sahara west of the Strip, then it just takes 5-10 minutes. The saying is that it takes about 30 minutes to get everywhere in the city. That's especially true.

    Bear in mind, there's also a lot of stop and go traffic which pretty much impedes on this. Quite frankly, the only time this would really be used is with Californicators coming in from LA or a further city.

     

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  6.  
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    Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased) (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:21pm

    Re: Re: Liability

    Is there a difference in fatalities per accident between regions with and without limits?

     

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  7.  
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    :Lobo Santo (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:26pm

    Re: Re: Re: Liability

    Apologies, but I must have left those statistics in my other pants.
    ; P

    I only know the speed limit / accident rate because I did a detailed report for school (once upon a time, long long ago).

     

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  8.  
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    Vincent Clement, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:34pm

    Politicians are funny. Instead of proposing cutbacks, especially to their own salaries and expenses, they come up with new ways to 'make' money. $25 is way to high. Will there be an annual pass that will be cheaper.

     

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  9.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:34pm

    Re: Sheer stupidity

    "There's no way this would raise money in Vegas."

    Just got back from there yesterday and couldn't agree more. Driving through Vegas is the perfect task for those with scenery ADD.

    Look, Desert! Ah, Lights! WTF, mountains? AAAAHHH, desert again!

     

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  10.  
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    out_of_the_blue, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:37pm

    Extremely bad in two ways:

    1) Sets up two tiers, or classes, open plutocracy. The roads belong equally to all.

    2) Promotes acceptance of on-vehicle transponders, as adopted by the privileged for a status symbol. That leads to existing plan for transponders on all vehicles, and charges by the mile -- with private corporations owning the roads, end of freedom to travel.

     

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  11.  
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    Chris-Mouse (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:47pm

    Cool, a license to break the law!

    Let's see, $25 to be able to break the traffic laws.
    How about $50 to be able to ignore impaired driving laws?
    maybe $100 to ignore drug laws. $500 might get you a free pass to ignore break and enter, or theft. $5000 to ignore the murder laws? Whay not, it's all money in the governments coffers.

    this idiot should not be allowed to hold any position of responsibility, anywhere.

     

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  12.  
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    ofb2632 (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:47pm

    Then they have to factor in liability. If someone were hit by a person with that pass, could they sue the state for allowing someone to exceed the posted limit?

     

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  13.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:53pm

    Yes, we need this.

    This is a great idea. I'm not so sure about the cost. It would be better if it was implemented differently, with a tiered license structure. In California we already have carpool lanes. Why not a speeding lane? To use the speeding lane you would have to qualify for a special license through the DMV.

     

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  14.  
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    weneedhelp (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:55pm

    special transponder installed

    Let me get this right, they want me to pay to have a "special" transponder installed? So I will pay for my own tracking device?

    No thanks, ill wait until it becomes mandatory, and then refuse to have one.

    Nuts on the road I take to work already do 80, and ive been in packs that blow by state troopers at 75. No need here in Western PA.

     

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  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:57pm

    "Up to 90..."

    Things sure have changed in Nevada, a state that not too many years ago had virtually no speed limits on its highways outside of suburban areas.

    Then I used to feel I was poking along if my speedometer dropped out of the 3 digits range.

     

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  16.  
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    Anon, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 2:57pm

    Terrible Idea

    How many times have you pulled in front of a vehicle, because you know they should be going approximately the speed limit? Two speed limits on the same road is a hazard.

     

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  17.  
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    Dan J., Sep 8th, 2010 @ 3:00pm

    Re: Liability

    There would also be a question if there were an accident if the state would share liability. After all, if the cause was excessive speed the state had given permission.

    That's actually the bigger issue with this proposal. Why are the police allowed to stop me and give me a ticket if I'm speeding? The justification is that speeding endangers not only myself but other people. So either the state is willing to allow me to recklessly endanger other people in order to raise money, or the state has just destroyed it's rationale for enforcing speeding laws.

     

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  18.  
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    Trerro, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 3:06pm

    Nevada?

    ..or they could, ya know, realize that a perfectly straight highway in the middle of a fricking desert with almost no one on it probably shouldn't have a speed limit in the first place.

     

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  19.  
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    Nastybutler77 (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 3:15pm

    Re: Terrible Idea

    How many times have you pulled in front of a vehicle, because you know they should be going approximately the speed limit? Two speed limits on the same road is a hazard.

    I get what you mean, but on a freeway, there is no pulling out. There are on ramps and off ramps leading onto and off of the far right lane where traffic is usually slowest. I do agree that two speed limits on the same freeway would be chaos. They'd have to do what an earlier commenter suggested and have a designated lane for "speeding."

    On a tangent, I've always thought speed limits were ridiculous and arbitrary. Why should a Ferrari being driven by a professional driver be constrained to the same speed as a 60 foot RV driven by a 90 year old geriatric? That's the basis of my argument the next time I get pulled over for speeding. That and appealing to his vanity in that the government puts officers in their positions and gives them the power to determine what's safe and what's not. Hopefully it will come across better in person than it looks in writing. And hopefully I won't need to use it anytime soon.

     

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  20.  
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    btr1701 (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 3:19pm

    Proof

    If anyone still needed proof that the claims of government officials that speed enforcement is about revenue rather than safety, this is pretty much it.

     

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  21.  
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    Sam, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 3:20pm

    Re: Re: Liability

    Permission or not, driving recklessly is still reckless. A person driving the German Autobahn has permission to drive as fast as they want to, but there is a posted recommended speed. Cause an accident because someone didn't see you coming due to speed and you are liable. Same thing would apply here.

     

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  22.  
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    Haywood (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 3:22pm

    Re: Terrible Idea

    "How many times have you pulled in front of a vehicle, because you know they should be going approximately the speed limit?"

    Exactly never. Your space and proportion sense is so off if you do this, you should give up driving.

     

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  23.  
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    Sam, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 3:23pm

    Re: Sheer stupidity

    I doubt this proposal would be intended for city driving. Tourists would be getting slaughtered, Bright Lights oooohhh! There is a lot of open road outside the city though.

     

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  24.  
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    jjmsan (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 3:28pm

    Re: Re: Liability

    The accident rates have nothing to do with liability. If you give someone permission to engage in an activity on your property and it causes damage to someone else you can be held liable.

     

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  25.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 3:41pm

    reading this local news report;
    [http://www.nevadaappeal.com/article/20100905/NEWS/100909776/1070&ParentProfile=1058], which outlines his other ideas, pretty much paints him (depending on your viewpoint) as the local teabagger candidate. I wouldn't read too much into it.

     

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  26.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 3:47pm

    I'm living in las vegas now.. i drive between vegas and primm several times a week and do 85-90 now and still get passed!!
    NHP sets their radar 15mph above posted speed limit. I know this because I asked a NHP patrol officer while at south command HQ during a service call (service tech for Xerox).
    this proposal is for areas way outside city limits on some of the most desolate roads in the state.
    think Silver State Classic.. a race along at 93 mile stretch of road where depending on class you can go as fast as you want... Yee HaWwwww..
    this clown is only proposing something that everyone does now just to generate revenue.. heck going up to the whore houses north west of vegas would take less then the normal 2 hours to get some nookie for all those tourists that want to go get laid and back to the tables faster. and No prostitution is NOT legal in Las Vegas or clark county.
    heck little known fact - the "strip" is not actually in las vegas.. that short three odd miles of land going up thru the center of town is actually Clark County, which means metro PD has zero jurisdiction.. thats sheriff territory and they will NOT step one foot on casino property unless called in by hotel security...
    /stepping off soap box

     

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  27.  
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    Cole, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 5:42pm

    Huh?

    90 mph is speeding???

     

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  28.  
    identicon
    Cyryl, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 6:19pm

    Re: Re: Liability

    The word "excessive" is CLEARLY used to describe speed that is over an allowed average or just logically unnecessary in the first place.

    The context of what he said was to indicate that the 'excessive' (unreasonable, unneccessary) speed is STATE-SANCTIONED at that point...

    Thus the question is raised on whether or not the State - having authorized and sanctioned these ridiculous speeds - would be liable for any portion of the responsibility, insurance, otherwise...were a horrible accident (caused by unreasonable speeds) to occur.

    His question is completely logical and valid. Flawlessly valid.

    If you could not see this yourself, you have no business taking part in this discussion.

    Get out.

     

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  29.  
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    Cyryl, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 6:26pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Liability

    Perhaps you didn't study very hard then, friend.

    Looking at the report CLEARLY reveals that there is a NIGHT AND DAY difference between speeds where fatalities are concerned.

    What else could matter if not fatalities? That IS the whole point... To avoid killing someone. Nothing else really matters.

     

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  30.  
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    abc gum, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 6:57pm

    I did not see anything about having to pass a test. The average driving skills I have witnessed on our highways does not provide any confidence in the success of this proposal.

     

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  31.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 8:25pm

    "offering special "speeding" passes for $25 per day"

    I can see the writing on the wall. When someone gets killed by someone who was speeding after getting one of these passes, the lawyers will be stacked up through the roof suing these politicians like crazy.

    "It was your fault my spouse got killed, you said he could speed for $25. Think of the children, I need to feed them and put them through college"

    Remember when Domino's pizza (I think it was) guaranteed that they could get their order to you in like 30 min or less and one of their delivery drivers ended up getting into an accident because of that. That program got shut down in a hurry after the lawyers got through with it.

     

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  32.  
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    Rose M. Welch (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 8:57pm

    Re: Dictionary Edit:

    Don't forget about 'resident'.

     

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  33.  
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    Jay (profile), Sep 8th, 2010 @ 9:10pm

    Re:

    With how hot it is on the Strip, can you blame them? Although, IIRC, they're right there just south of the Luxor. But good lord is the Strip bad to try to walk through! I'll never do that again, I promise!

     

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  34.  
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    Jesse, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 9:13pm

    You kind of lose moral credibility saying that speeding is dangerous when you say, "Hey if you just pay be 25$ I'll look the other way." How about we sell drinking and driving passes next?

    This proposal is like officially recognizing that speeding isn't dangerous and tickets are just driving tax.

     

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  35.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 9:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Liability

    Perhaps you didn't study very hard then, friend. Looking at the report CLEARLY reveals that there is a NIGHT AND DAY difference between speeds where fatalities are concerned.

    Perhaps you need to learn how to read then, friend. He didn't claim otherwise.

    What else could matter if not fatalities? That IS the whole point... To avoid killing someone. Nothing else really matters.

    If the possibility of getting killed is all that matters to you then I suggest that you never get in a car. People have been killed in cars that weren't even moving.

     

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  36.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 9:35pm

    Re: Liability

    There would also be a question if there were an accident if the state would share liability. After all, if the cause was excessive speed the state had given permission.

    Can you sue the state because there was an accident and you think they set the limit too high?

     

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  37.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 8th, 2010 @ 9:40pm

    Next: Lower Limits

    I seems to me this would encourage them to set the limits artificially low in order to sell passes even to people who just want to drive at normal speeds.

     

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  38.  
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    R. Miles (profile), Sep 9th, 2010 @ 3:49am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Liability

    Looking at the report CLEARLY reveals that there is a NIGHT AND DAY difference between speeds where fatalities are concerned.
    I'm hoping this is sarcasm because anyone with eyes can see there were more fatalities under 55MPH than those caused at "excessive" speeds.

     

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  39.  
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    Yeebok (profile), Sep 9th, 2010 @ 3:56am

    I am laughing, I actually had the same idea while really drunk one night, and a 1000km trip coming up in a week, the idea of being "allowed" to do upto 110 or 120% of the posted speed limit for a fee seemed reasonable (it'd actually take several hours off a long trip).. when sober it dawned on me that'd never happen then I read this :)

    I live in Australia though.

     

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  40.  
    identicon
    Danny, Sep 9th, 2010 @ 5:50am

    Yeah right

    The police are against the idea because they say it'll create more accidents, which some might argue isn't proven fact, but it probably does make their lives more complicated as well.
    No the police are against it because a $25 pass is less than the $100+ ticket they would give to speeders. (Or am I just a bit too cynical?)

    But I think ultimately I would be against it myself. As others have said the first time someone is injured/killed by a driver that had one of these passes lawyers would descend on that state like a flock of flesh eating crows. I just think that giving these passes is too risky.

     

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  41.  
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    Lachlan Hunt (profile), Sep 9th, 2010 @ 6:12am

    The problem with speeding is not only that people are travelling too fast to handle the speeds, there are also problems created by having vehicles on the same road travelling at vastly different speeds.

    On most highways, the difference in speed between vehicles is generally +/-5km/h around the specified limit. By allowing some cars to optionally travel up to 25 miles, or 40km/h, faster, you suddenly have a situation where you'll either have cars rapidly and unexpectedly approaching from behind and either slamming on their breaks to avoid hitting you, or whizzing around. That does not create a safe driving environment.

     

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  42.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 9th, 2010 @ 6:34am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Liability

    So if you're actually going to hit someone... put your foot down!!

     

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  43.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 9th, 2010 @ 9:50am

    If I'm going to spend $25 bucks to be able to speed, I want to be able to at least go 130.

    Hell I go 100 on my way out to Vegas as it is.

     

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  44.  
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    nasch (profile), Sep 9th, 2010 @ 12:48pm

    Re: Yes, we need this.

    I like it, but the only problem is it could only legitimately apply to a car-driver combination. That is, you prove that you can safely drive a particular car at high speed and you get a pass. That doesn't mean you can safely drive a pickup truck at the same speed, or that anyone else can drive your car as safely. So the problems are 1) how to validate the car + driver combination and 2) how to safely conduct the testing. After all, if someone fails it could go very, very badly.

     

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  45.  
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    nasch (profile), Sep 9th, 2010 @ 12:50pm

    Re: Re: Terrible Idea

    That's the basis of my argument the next time I get pulled over for speeding.

    Yeah cops usually love the "the law shouldn't apply to me" argument. Good luck with that one. FYI professional race car drivers get speeding tickets all the time.

     

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  46.  
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    nasch (profile), Sep 9th, 2010 @ 12:52pm

    Re: Re: Terrible Idea

    Give it a rest. I would challenge you to reliably tell the difference between 90 mph and 70 mph at half a mile or more from head on. You could argue that if it's close enough that an extra 20 mph makes it unsafe, then you shouldn't be passing anyway, but your arrogance is unwarranted.

     

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  47.  
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    nasch (profile), Sep 9th, 2010 @ 12:56pm

    Re: Nevada?

    That does sound nice, but when Montana removed speed limits from most of their highways they found (surprise!) people started driving really fast. They still pulled people over and gave them tickets for unsafe driving, so it amounted to an unposted speed limit that varied depending on any number of factors such as which trooper saw you, his mood that day, what kind of vehicle you're driving (a camper going 100 probably looks more dangerous than a sedan at the same speed for example - if it's even possible to drive an RV 100 mph), and who knows what else. That was a really long sentence... So in the end they put back the speed limits.

     

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  48.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 9th, 2010 @ 3:19pm

    Re:

    Heh. A LOT of Nevada is like a LOT of Australia. Hundreds of miles of nothing but dirt and rocks.

     

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  49.  
    identicon
    john, Sep 9th, 2010 @ 6:44pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Liability

    You were reading the stats for Non-interstate fatalities. The stats for driving on an interstate highway is much higher for over 55mph.

     

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  50.  
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    weneedhelp (profile), Sep 10th, 2010 @ 7:22am

    special transponder installed

    Let me get this right, they want me to pay to have a "special" transponder installed? So I will pay for my own tracking device?

    No thanks, ill wait until it becomes mandatory, and then refuse to have one.

    Nuts on the road I take to work already do 80, and ive been in packs that blow by state troopers at 75. No need here in Western PA.

     

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  51.  
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    Nastybutler77 (profile), Sep 13th, 2010 @ 4:56pm

    Re: Re: Nevada?

    I believe the reason the reinstated the speed limits in Montana was due to them wanting to be eligable for federal funds. Much like Louisiana finally raising their drinking age to 21 so they would be able to qualify for fed money. It's the federal government's way of coercing States into doing what they want.

     

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  52.  
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    Nastybutler77 (profile), Sep 13th, 2010 @ 4:57pm

    Re: Re: Re: Terrible Idea

    Thanks. I'll let you know how it goes.

     

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  53.  
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    Laura Patriot (profile), Sep 30th, 2010 @ 9:57am

    For all the nay sayers

    1) Know the facts before you post your rhetoric:

    Free Limit Plan: demystified!

    http://ginoforgovernor.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=84:f ree-limit-plan-demystified&catid=34:press-releases&Itemid=55

    2) If you had spend some time you would have found that the National Highway data supports the Free Limit Plan:

    http://ginoforgovernor.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=86:national -highway-data-supports-free-limit-plan&catid=34:press-releases&Itemid=55

    3) Cost structures go down based on a VOLUNTEER usage of the Free Limit Plan!

    http://ginoforgovernor.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=48&Item id=29

    Please know your facts before nay saying a credible and brilliant plan for Nevada.

    Thank you

     

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