How does a speed trap work ?

A speed trap is a road or highway section where traffic laws are heavily enforced. Normally, speed traps are placed on locations where motorists tend to speed up, such as straight highways or downhill. In most cases, law enforcers set up speed traps on accident-prone locations. A traffic officer will park beside a speed trap and use radar to apprehend speeders.

Most countries establish speed standards to ensure the safety of their pedestrians and motorists. In locations where there is heavy traffic like downtown, speed limits are very low to prevent motorists from hitting other motorists or pedestrians. Downtowns tend to be more accident-prone due to sudden starting and stopping. However, in areas like open highway, speed limits are higher to keep good traffic condition.

A speed trap is designed to seize motorists who are violating the speed limit, and it is mostly established in an area where the speed limit is constantly violated. Common locations for speed traps include areas where the speed limit changes, downhill inclines or locations such as playgrounds and schools. In many areas, locals are aware of the speed traps location. As such, law enforcement mostly apprehends out of town visitors than locals.

Some motorists find speed traps unfair especially in areas where traffic exceeds speed limits. For them, changing the speed limit would be more sensible than speed traps unless higher speed increases the number of accidents. However, most speed traps are set up after careful study is made by the transportation agency. Law enforcement officials believe that motorists who exceed an established speed limit place themselves and many other motorists in danger. Particularly important in dangerous driving conditions such as fog, snow or rain, speed traps save lives by making motorists conscious of their speed rate.

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