Editor’s Scratchpad

Tuesday, January 29, 2002

Another use for
those traffic cams

What with all the traffic-camera vans lurking by the roadsides, I decided I'd better calibrate the speedometer in my Miata. I usually rip over the Pali (speed limit 45 mph) at a pretty good clip, and if I'm going to get a ticket I want to know exactly how far over the speed limit I'm going.

I was headed through the second tunnel, toward Honolulu, and traffic was fairly light, meaning I was able to weave around the cars without too much honking and headlight-flashing. As I came out of the tunnel at 65 mph and hit the crest of the hill, I saw the speed-camera van up ahead in the pullout area on the right side of the highway.

I stomped on the accelerator and shot past a couple of cars, then whipped over into the right-hand lane. As I went by the camera van, the speedometer indicated 70 mph. I bared my teeth at the camera in a big grin, gave it the old "you're No. 1" with my right hand, and sped past.

Now I just have to wait for the ticket, and I'll see how accurate my speedometer is.

--Nancy Christenson McNamee

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