It seems inevitable that we are all going to be guilty of speeding and get caught at some point in our lives. Whether it’s as simple ad not noticing the speed limit change that took place or you are a habitual speeder who doesn’t seem to understand why the limits aren’t raised, hopefully you aren’t guilty of some of the crazy speeding that can cause others harm. While I am in no way condoning speeding or being reckless on the road (take it to the track if you want to see how fast your car will go) there can be some humor and amazement involved in some of the most interesting speeding events, here are some for your enjoyment.
Super Bike – Motorcycles are a lot of fun and can easily be tuned up to allow for some of the most impressive speeds. With the engine and parts exposed along with the smaller stature they can be easy to work on for just about anyone, including one Minnesota man. This rider did not notice the aircraft above that was patrolling for speed which clocked him at 205.11 mph on his 2003 Honda RC51 motorcycle that had been highly modified.
Millionaire’s Outrageous Ticket- Being ticketed for going 65 mph in a 50 mph zone doesn’t sound like it would carry a heavy fine, but one such ticket brought in a fine of nearly $60,000. The reason is the ticket was given to a millionaire in Finland. Finland adjusts the ticket fines based on annual income to ensure the percent of income paid for the ticket is fair and since this many has an income of about $7 million per year this was the going rate. For comparison this would be about $510 to someone making $60,000 per year in income.
Mechanic Joy Ride – Whether this Mechanic say the classic John Hughes film “Ferris Beuller’s Day Off” or not is unknown, but what is known is he took a car for a joyride in similar fashion to the parking garage attendants from the movie. The joy ride was in a Lamborghini Gallardo in Australia which was clocked at 99 mph in a 43 mph area. By law the car had to be impounded even though it didn’t belong to the driver. The owner did get his car back eventually, but will most likely never take it to that particular shop again.
A Bit Overzealous – A Swedish man took his Mercedes- Benz SLS AMG out for a ride on the highways of Switzerland at a speed of 186 mph. This was fast enough that the speed would not register on the equipment used by the police at the time and unlike the Autobahn, Switzerland has a country wide speed limit. The car took a full third of a mile to slow down and the only excuse given was a broken speedometer. As a millionaire and like in the Finland case, this man was fined $1,001,400 for this reckless driving and was accused of ignoring elementary traffic rules in the desire for speed.
A Bit of an Urban Myth – We hear of urban myths many times and wonder how much truth there is to the tale because a story often has to have some basis in truth right? This myth states a man driving a Koenigsegg CCR was clocked at a speed of 242 mph during the 2003 Gumball Rally and was pulled over for a speeding ticket. There are versions of this story that state it was a complete fallacy and others that say he paid a fine in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Going Too Slow – Most of us laugh at the notion of a ticket for driving too slow, but this did happen to a teacher from Scotland. She faced a $300 fine for driving too slow as she was slowing down to five mph around curves in a road on a two-lane highway, which caused a severe backup behind her. The explanation she gave was that she usually didn’t drive in the dark and happened to be wearing new glasses which she wasn’t used to just yet. Yes, you can get a ticket for driving too slow, keep it moving on the roads out there.
Don’t Speed Here – New Jersey collects nearly $30,000 per mile in fines on its roads. With speed traps every thirty miles and special laws it’s easy to see how. The special laws state that if you are caught racing in the state you will face a double fin when caught on roads where the posted speed limit is 65 mph. The definition of speeding in New Jersey is anything above ten mph over the posted speed limit, making nearly every ticket in the state one that would be charged a double fine and increasing the overall revenue brought in through collections.
Lowest Fines – Speeding is not a good idea, the speed limits are posted for a reason, but the most forgiving state for speeding happens to be North Dakota. First of all they have the lowest speed trap activity in the country and the fine for driving 65 mph in a 55 mph zone is only $10. When the speed limit is 65 or more the fin is a simple $5 per every mile over the limit you were travelling, which computes to easy math and makes tickets much more affordable than most other states.
Beating Facebook – What generates over $15 billion dollars annually and isn’t even a business model? Speeding tickets. There are 34,000,000 tickets written each year and the average cost of them to the driver is $150. Add in the fact that insurance companies typically increase premiums by $300 per year for a ticket and you see a huge revenue stream that isn’t even a single business. This annual revenue is larger even than Facebook with $10.2 billing for the insurance companies and $5.1 billion for the states that issued the fines. It sure seems like a huge cost and huge racket that should make you want to slow down.
As much fun as we have had looking at speeding tickets and some of the facts and events over the years, speed limits are in place for a reason; to keep you and everyone else safe. You are better off avoiding tickets by driving within the speed limits and staying safe on the road. If you don’t want to contribute to that enormous fund that I discussed, pay attention to the posted speeds and give yourself enough time to get where you need to go that you don’t feel the need to speed on any roads.