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      06-10-2013, 07:17 PM   #1
PSUSMU
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$490 Red Light Violation - CA

I was out in Palo Alto for an interview. Driving home from my Aunt's around 1am (sober), accidentally ran a red light while looking at the Facebook 'Like' sign. I'm an idiot and take the blame, but FOUR HUNDRED AND NINETY dollars? Seriously, San Mateo County??

I live in DC, so there's no way of me showing up to court. I'm SOL, right?
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      06-10-2013, 07:23 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PSUSMU
I was out in Palo Alto for an interview. Driving home from my Aunt's around 1am (sober), accidentally ran a red light while looking at the Facebook 'Like' sign. I'm an idiot and take the blame, but FOUR HUNDRED AND NINETY dollars? Seriously, San Mateo County??

I live in DC, so there's no way of me showing up to court. I'm SOL, right?
I just took Traffic survival school a couple months ago, it was mainly full of red light runners. You're pretty much screwed!
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      06-10-2013, 07:25 PM   #3
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Hope you did well on your interview
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      06-10-2013, 07:26 PM   #4
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Dude, get an Escort 9500 ix. It tells you where the red light and speed cams are.

Would have paid for itself right there.
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      06-10-2013, 07:26 PM   #5
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Hope you did well on your interview
They flew me out to Palo Alto HQ, for a job here at their DC office... Didn't get it.
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Dude, get an Escort 9500 ix. It tells you where the red light and speed cams are.
Dude, I was in a rental car.
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      06-10-2013, 07:28 PM   #6
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Quote:
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They flew me out to Palo Alto HQ, for a job here at their DC office... Didn't get it.

Dude, I was in a rental car.
Like Dude, wheres your car. sorry I had to.
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      06-10-2013, 07:30 PM   #7
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They flew me out to Palo Alto HQ, for a job here at their DC office... Didn't get it.

Dude, I was in a rental car.
They're portable, you can plug it into the 12v socket. I always bring some RD with me when I travel.
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      06-10-2013, 07:30 PM   #8
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You didn't even get the job? God, that's annoying...you should have the ticket charged to them as well :P
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      06-10-2013, 09:26 PM   #9
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Yeah the state is broke so they increased all traffic violation fees. $490 sounds about right. It always sucks to have it happen to you.
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      06-10-2013, 09:46 PM   #10
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The red light crap should be unconstitutional. It's a major scam in the Chicago burbs. Most of the red light "violations" are cars turning right on red. But at least it's only $100 a pop here. I've seen cars get flashed because they were in the intersection waiting to go left when the light was green and couldn't get through their turn after it turned yellow.
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      06-10-2013, 10:01 PM   #11
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I have no problem with red light cameras. Too many a$$hats flagrantly blow through them with no regard for anyone's safety. As for motorists getting popped waiting to turn left in the middle of an intersection or making a right turn - at least in Florida - every violation is (supposed to be) reviewed by a human before a citation is issued. If the action is deemed safe no ticket is issued. And of course you can always challenge the ticket in court. You'd be surprised how many tickets get tossed when challenged.

As least OP is owning up to his lapse in judgement, but if Facebook is the reason you ran through a red light then $500 is a fair tax. I'd rather you be a little bit tipsy but at least concentrating on the road.

On the bright side, it can take a very long before an out-of-state motorist driving a rental vehicle gets the citation in his hand. I believe in Arizona speed camera violations must be served by a court official within a certain amount of time otherwise the ticket gets dismissed. You may want to check the laws and look for any loopholes that might save you from having to pay the fine. But Facebook, seriously? Write the check.

/End soapbox rant.
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      06-10-2013, 10:29 PM   #12
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Maybe it's a city thing. I rarely see anyone blatantly blowing through red lights. The occasional "orange" light runner, but nothing serious. Then again, I live in a small town.

$500 for a red light violation is ridiculous, IMO. It's all about money. When texting while driving ranks up there with DUI, then I'll believe traffic laws are about safety. When a person kills someone because he/she was texting while driving, and that person gets sent to jail for 10 years for vehicular homicide, then I'll believe.
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      06-10-2013, 10:38 PM   #13
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I have no problems with red light cameras. But the action of making yellow lights shorter is the scam....
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      06-10-2013, 10:40 PM   #14
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I wonder how many people know that when a red light camera is installed at an intersection they actually reduce the length of time the light is yellow in order to catch more people. Also, rear end collisions significantly increase at intersections with red light cameras due to sudden/aggressive braking out of fear of setting off the camera.

The above mentioned things are two of my biggest gripes with red light cameras. The third thing that gets me is that a large portion of the revenue generated from the citations goes to a private company that installs/operates the systems for the cities that use them. The cities themselves don't own/operate the systems, they simply collect a portion of the fine and provide the legal system. So a private company is making money off of it, which is wrong IMO.
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      06-10-2013, 10:46 PM   #15
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I have no problems with red light cameras. But the action of making yellow lights shorter is the scam....
Yeah I've read about that. That's a problem, but there's simply no excuse when the light turns red and five cars ignore it.
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      06-10-2013, 10:56 PM   #16
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We had red light cameras in Houston, but we voted them out. Power to the peeps!
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      06-10-2013, 11:24 PM   #17
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Regardless, $250 would have been sufficient. $500?! for that.. BLOW ME, CALIFORNIA.
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      06-11-2013, 06:36 AM   #18
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They installed them all over Raleigh, NC and they have been taken to court because of the shorter yellow light. They are in the process of taking all the red light cameras away.... Just glad I live in Charlotte, Far far away from California...
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      06-11-2013, 09:35 AM   #19
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I agree with the camera lights. I got tagged in In San Diego about four years ago I was just following the person in front of me through the light and did not notice it was red and got one. It was $470. They are expinsive.
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      06-11-2013, 10:12 AM   #20
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So, in an unfamiliar car, in a city you don't frequent, you ran a red light while looking at Facebook???? Be glad they are only fining you $490 (not all that different than if an officer wrote you up for the same offense)

Rightfully, your insurance will skyrocket for a red light offense. If you had a Cali license, you would get extra points for this sort of violation.

For those with a picture in a left turn pocket, part of what is taken is your speed as well. When the picture of you making a left turn is accompanied by a speed of 3-5 mph, the ticket gets thrown away.
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      06-11-2013, 10:38 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PSUSMU View Post
I was out in Palo Alto for an interview. Driving home from my Aunt's around 1am (sober), accidentally ran a red light while looking at the Facebook 'Like' sign. I'm an idiot and take the blame, but FOUR HUNDRED AND NINETY dollars? Seriously, San Mateo County??

I live in DC, so there's no way of me showing up to court. I'm SOL, right?
This comes up every once in a while, but I'm pretty sure the red light cameras were outlawed a couple years ago. I would follow up with the Palo Alto enforcement to see if it's still voluntary pay only.

http://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/lo...200793331.html

EDIT: After reading other comments not sure if this is for a normal red light or red light camera flash situation
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      06-11-2013, 10:51 AM   #22
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I would follow up with the Palo Alto enforcement to see if it's still voluntary pay only.
So you can volunteer to pay or not!?!?
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