|Subject: Have you ever received a speeding ticket in Massachusetts? It may have been ILLEGAL
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Date Posted: 14:48:17 11/01/07 Thu
Have you have ever received a speeding ticket? Did you know many speed limits in Massachusetts are ILLEAGL? You read it right, many speed limit signs are posted illegally under Massachusetts law and police and legislatures are well aware of it. Not only are they aware of it, they use the illegal speed limits to generate revenue off of state tax-payers backs like you.
Here is a true story example;
In August of 2007 a 17 year old male and a friend were leaving the Greendale Mall in Worcester, Ma. The road being traveled was a two lane road in both directions, and the individual mentioned above was going up a slight incline. Thinking the road was an on ramp to route I-190, the individual began to accelerate so as to enter the highway at or close to the speed of flowing traffic (that’s what was taught in driving school). Just before he crested the hill he noticed a 35 MPH speed limit sign, so he began to slow down. Seconds later, as he looked down the hill, he noticed police cruisers with officers standing outside the vehicles signaling drivers to pull over. He pulled over and was told that he was clocked by radar going 51 MPH in a 35 MPH zone, and received a ticket totaling $160.00. The individual, believing a police officer’s word would be taken over his paid the fine.
Approximately 1 month later the 17 year old junior operator received notification in the mail that he would be losing his license for 90 days under the new Massachusetts Junior Operator Law.
In order to get his license back, the young, man has to take a road rage class (which he must pay to attend), an attitude adjustment class (which he must pay to attend), pay a $500.00 reinstatement fee, re-take the written driving test and the road test (both of which must be paid for), and of course the rise in insurance premiums. To add insult to injury the loss of license was appealed (after paying a $50.00 appeal fee) and quickly rejected.
Knowing all this, it’s easy to say, “Well, he broke the law.” That’s what he thought too, but hours of research proved differently. Here is the condensed version…
Speed limits are set in accordance with MGL Chapter 85 Section 2. An engineering study MUST be conducted along with other factors. If a speed limit is posted without this procedure, it is in violation of Chapter 90, Section 18, and is therefore considered illegal and unenforceable.
If a speed limit is not posted in accordance with Chapter 90 Section 18 it then falls under MGL Chapter 90 Section 17 which states… Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90, Section 17 governs the speed of motor vehicles on unposted roadways. The speed limits on roadways that fall into this category are often referred to as ``prima facie'' speed limits. The present prima facie speed limits according to Chapter 90, Section 17 are condensed below:
....it shall be prima facie evidence of a rate of speed greater than is reasonable and proper if a motor vehicle is operated in excess of
1. 50 miles per hour on a divided highway outside of a thickly settled or business district for a distance of 1/4 of a mile.
2. 40 miles per hour on an undivided highway outside of a thickly settled or business district for a distance of 1/4 of a mile.
3. 30 miles per hour in a thickly settled or business district for a distance of 1/8 of a mile.
4. 20 miles per hour in a legally established school zone.
Note the distance requirements associated with the enforcement of Chapter 90, Section 17. Instantaneous radar or laser readings are not adequate. The motor vehicle must be shown to have been in excess of these speed limits for the entire distance associated with each respective speed limit. Also the prima facie speed limits cannot be posted, with the exception of a legally established school zone.
The road where the young man was ticketed is illegally posted (this is known due to a request for information that was done), therefore, it falls under MGL ch 90 sec 17. Being that the road was in a business district the speed limit is 50MPH. Remember, he was allegedly clocked going 51 MPH. What officer would write a ticket for 1 MPH over the limit? Besides, in Massachusetts we have “presumed” speed limits. Under the law it is legal to travel over the posted speed limit if the speed you are traveling is reasonable and safe to do so under the existing circumstances.
So you see if you break the law you will be punished. If the police, legislature, or other officials break the law, you will be punished. Where is the justice in all of this?
If you want more information because you think you may have been wrongfully ticked, or you just want to be educated for future reference, answer this post by simply typing “more info wanted” in the name (required) space.
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