Tuesday, December 15, 2009
One-shot traffic sting demonstrates need for enforcement of traffic laws
by Larry Geller
This from Honolulu Advertiser’s breaking news on the web:
The "solo-bike" officers pulled over the offending drivers and handed out 45 tickets for failing to yield the right of way to a pedestrian, 15 for drivers caught using cell phones, 14 for failing to buckle up, 12 for miscellaneous infractions and one to an elderly woman who jaywalked across King Street right in front of the officers. [Honolulu Advertiser, 90 tickets issued in Moiliili during pedestrian-safety campaign, 12/15/2009]
That was 90 tickets in a 90-minute enforcement action at one single location. A ticket a minute. Then it was all over, and back to lawbreaking as usual.
Not enforcing traffic laws leads to injury and death. Motorists in Honolulu know that there are no cops around to grab them, so they do what they like. This sting operation simply demonstrates that.
Tomorrow, next week, next month, it will be lawbreaking as usual. When a driver runs a red light, it is with confidence that police are nowhere nearby. When cars pile into an intersection as the lights turn red, they know that blocking the intersection is wrong and that they won’t suffer any consequences for doing it.
There are consequences to HPD inaction, of course. People die.