The truth about speeding and speed limits in Granby
September 3, 2008
To the Editor:
It is not often that I feel obligated to respond to a letter to the editor written by a disenchanted citizen who was detected speeding through our town. But when printed comments are slanderous and fundamentally untrue, it is important to shed the light of truth on the matter.
In the Aug. 28 edition of the Ski-Hi Daily News, a letter writer insinuates that officers of the Granby Police Department are not applying the law fairly and are working as “pimps” for the town and using traffic enforcement as a fundraiser. He even suggests that perhaps we are funding the town Christmas party through traffic enforcement. These assertions are ludicrous.
The writer asks rhetorically, “who isn’t speeding at some point when entering Granby?” The Granby Police Department has run speed studies in many locations to determine what common driver behaviors are. Fortunately for the citizens and visitors of Granby, only about 1 percent of the drivers are traveling at the speed of the editorial writer’s vehicle (54 mph in a 30 mph zone) at that given location.
In other words 99 out of every 100 vehicles realize that 54 mph in a 30 mph zone is too fast. The writer also suggests that the “distance between the 55, 45 and 35 mph (it’s actually 30) signs is so short, you almost endanger yourself and everyone around you if you immediately come down to those speeds.”
The facts are as follows: The speed limit changes to 50 mph one mile after the 55 mph sign; the speed changes to 45 mph 2,709 feet after the 50 mph sign; the speed changes to 30 mph 706 feet after the 45 mph sign. This driver was written a summons at a point 490 feet into the 30 mph zone. In other words the writer would like our citizens to believe that it is difficult and dangerous to slow down to 30 mph over the course of these distances.
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The speeding summons was issued northbound on U.S. Highway 40 at CR 574. This particular location is where the Police Department receives more citizen requests for speed enforcement than any other.
The writer states, “If you agree not to contest and pay the ticket within a few weeks, they’ll even give you a discount on the points.” I trust most citizens realize that the point deduction for summonses paid within 20 days is a Colorado Statutory provision, not a municipal incentive to not contest tickets.
The writer then states, “It was amusing how the officer detected my wife’s speed on one side of town and waited until we got to the other side of town ” nearly one mile ” before deciding to pull her over.” I trust the citizens understand that our officer was not amused while attempting to catch up to a vehicle speeding 54 mph through our town. It takes time, even with emergency equipment operating, to safely catch up to a vehicle traveling that fast.
I commend the police officer for his professionalism in taking appropriate action in this case, while treating the occupants of the vehicle with dignity and respect even though he was receiving verbal abuse from the male passenger of the stopped vehicle.
William H. Housley
Chief of police