How Do Speed Cameras Work?

How Do Speed Cameras Work?

Watch Out for Speed Cameras!

In modern times, speed cameras are becoming more and more apparent in society. Although many people receive tickets from these devices, they may not know, how do speed cameras work? The purpose of a speed camera is to detect the speed of a vehicle on a roadway. This begins with choosing a proper location and setting up the equipment. Once chosen, the camera detects speed and takes digital photos of violators. Depending on the region, the camera may take pictures after a certain threshold above the limit. For instance, the speed limit may be 35 mph, but the camera may not snap unless a vehicle passes 40 mph. Depending where legal, radar detectors are for sale to detect these devices for drivers.

Typical Technology of Speed Cameras

Gatso Speed Camera - Camera Device - Andrew Dunn on Wikipedia - EuroDrift

Gatso Speed Camera – Camera Device – Andrew Dunn on Wikipedia – EuroDrift

To answer the question, “how do speed cameras work?”, let’s begin with the devices. Speed cameras detect speed via detectors embedded in the road, or via radar signal. For the detector route, technicians must install the device. From here, the device detects the speed between two points. This is because velocity needs an initial and final point of calculation. Next, the camera will calculate the speed using a scientific equation, then determine if to snap a photo.

If the camera uses radar, the device sends a signal to the vehicle. The signal bounces off of the vehicle and returns. By calculating the gap of the signal, the camera can determine speed. Basically, the camera first sends a signal towards the vehicle. This begins the calculation. Then, the device awaits a return signal, which provides a time gap. Lastly, the time gap goes into an equation to determine speed. As mentioned above, radar detectors are available to detect these devices, allowing speeding drivers to avoid tickets. Note, speeding illegally is NOT something that EuroDrift supports!

Keep in mind, the camera itself is usually inspected every 90 days for functionality. Furthermore, the device on the ground, if in use, is tested at least once a year. This ensures optimal performance of the system, making it tougher to debate a ticket. Although some people say it is easy to win in court, that is not always the case. Either bring a lawyer, or know how to debate the topic, but there will be no tips for that in this article… sorry.

Photo Information & Security

How do we know red-light and speed cameras work? – Department of Justice and Community Safety – YouTube

After the photo is taken, it is digitally stored in an encrypted location with high security. This protects the image itself from alteration or obtainment. The images are then used in court, if necessary, to prove who is speeding. Each individual image contains a ton of info. This includes the date, time, location, direction, speed, and vehicle information. As per the vehicle info, the photo allows for determination of the color, type, make, and plate. Even in a multiple lane situation, detectors work very well. If there is more than one lane, more than one radar or ground detector is usually used. This way, there is no confusion between each individual lane. In conclusion, hopefully this articles covers the topic of “how do speed cameras work?”.

A final word of advice, don’t end up like the British tourist in Dubai who obtained $47,000 in violations within 3 hours…

Note: The featured image of the article is by Mariordo of Wikipedia.

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