New speed cameras won't eliminate errors, radar experts say
Baltimore City's speed camera "money grab" to continue.
While city officials believe tracking radar will produce more accurate results, experts say a rigorous human review process and frequent calibration of the cameras will remain essential if the city wants to move toward Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's goal of achieving "a zero-error program."
"In the laboratory, in the hands of a skilled scientist, these things could be tested and proved reliable," said Christopher Davis, an electrical and computer engineering professor at the University of Maryland. "But put out on the street and left there for months at a time, I wouldn't have confidence they'd give reliable readings 100 percent of the time."
City officials have emphasized that, while they trust the new cameras, they will also beef up the process of reviewing and verifying the automated cameras' citations before they are mailed to motorists for payment of the $40 fine. A key change will be at the Police Department, where officers had been checking up to six tickets per minute. The department says it will double the number of officers available to review citations and have supervisors spot-check their work.
The contractor's and the City's "experts" claim the problems that had created bogus citations in the past will be solved.
But technical experts such as "Christopher Davis, an electrical and computer engineering professor at the University of Maryland" and "Jin Kang, chairman of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the Johns Hopkins University" don't agree.
The speed camera system is a dishonest money grab promoted as being for the safety of school children.