CHP: No Link Between Labor Day ‘Speed Traps’, Calif. Budget Crisis

LOS ANGELES (CBS) — If you’re headed out for a road trip this Labor Day weekend, be sure to watch your speedometer or you could end up forking over your hard-earned cash to a state in desperate need of some.

Dozens of so-called “speed traps” — where multiple California Highway Patrol cars line up with one officer manning a hand-held radar gun — are littered across the Southland on any given Saturday morning, but drivers should expect even more over the upcoming holiday weekend.

CHP officer Ming Hsu told KNX 1070 officers will be enforcing speed limits at high-value locations, including near the southbound 170 Freeway at Roscoe and northbound 15 Freeway headed out of Victorville.

“We look at where all the collisions are occurring and also where the complaints are coming in for,” said Hsu.

He pointed to one popular “speed trap” near the 210 Freeway off the Osborne Road exit, where Hsu said the department gets frequent reports of speeds up to 90 MPH or more.

And despite what most of the public may believe, a officer hiding behind a bush with a radar gun is more of a deterrent than having multiple CHP units out in force, according to Hsu.

“The officers just driving around and not actually taking enforcement action, people aren’t going to slow down when they see an officer anymore,” he said .

The state’s budget crisis has also recently fueled speculation that ramped-up enforcement operations on behalf of the CHP are simply a backdoor tax to help pad California’s coffers.

But Hsu rejects the charge that the CHP is more of a revenue-generating agency than a law enforcement agency.

“The CHP and the state of California do not receive any funds from the tickets that are written,” he said. “Our budget is strictly from the motor vehicle account which is paid for by vehicle registration.”


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