Another neighboring town will soon be adding speed cameras to its streets. Citing excessive speeds of nearly 600 cars going about 10 miles over the limit, the local police chief Chris Brecher, hopes to lower the cases of speeding.

The two cameras that will be added will be on 8th St. near the baseball complex and on Highway 218 on the south side of town, where all who are going from Vinton to Waterloo will pass.

I get the reason for installing them, yet, I tend to believe that a simple reminder like Vinton has on the north end of town near the middle school also plays a big part in lowering the speed, without a ticket.

It could be me and the old age creeping in, but when I drive through a town that I don't live in, what I DON'T need is a speed trap to catch me speeding. Most of the time I have my eyes on the traffic, or I'm looking for a specific address. Now I have to add keeping my eyes peeled for cameras and trying to figure out just exactly what the speed limit is.

Personally, I think it's another way that technology adds yet another distraction. Just a simple alert, like the posted speed and telling me how fast I'm going makes much more sense to me.

Every time I drive down C Ave. heading into Vinton, the speed indicator lets me know that hey, "Good job, you're putting around like a little old lady" or "hey girl, you must be in a hurry, slow down, " and I do.

I don't know, maybe it's the idea of "big brother" that annoys me and does little to make me feel welcome in your town. Independence is the same way. There's a speed camera just as you enter on Highway 150. Nothing says, "Welcome to Independence" like, "Here's your ticket." I honestly get the reason for the cameras, usually, everyone slams on their brakes as they hit the bridge so I don't have to worry about it, but once past the camera, all bets are off.

It's the same if I have to go to Cedar Rapids. I avoid Interstate 380. Everyone hits their brakes when passing the cameras, which I'm sure has caused its own set of accidents, and then it's pedal to the metal past the cameras.

Is it some sort of psychological response? A possible ticket can be issued in this spot, so everyone slows down just in that location. In Vinton, at least for me, once I'm gently reminded I tend to keep my speed down after passing the location.

Maybe it's just the kinder and gentler approach as opposed to the heavy-handed slap of a ticket that I appreciate. It triggers a "be careful" response rather than the "Man, now I have to avoid a ticket right HERE," thinking.

Who knows.

Whatever it is, look out going through LaPorte City, and thanks Vinton PD for the kinder, gentler approach.


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DC November 29, 2023, 10:31 am Let me see, wonder what the "in Car " cameras cost the taxpayers that they won't have to use anymore??? I thought the police departments were paid to enforce the law, not hire a sub contractor.

Also, I would be very curious as to what percentage the city receives from the camera operation and what happens with the money from same. There will probably be a pay cut due to the reduced work load......

Dave Coots