In Italy, Even The Police Cars Are Faster

Posted in Lotus, News, Police by Kurt Ernst | July 22nd, 2011 | 3 Responses |

Image: Lotus

Police departments in Italy have used some impressive rides throughout the years. The Italian State Police (Polizia di Stato) had a pair of Lamborghini Gallardos until one was totaled in a wreck with a Seat Ibiza. Now comes word from Lotus that the Italian Military Police, the Arma dei Carabinieri, have taken delivery of two specially equipped Lotus Evora S police cars. Read More…

The Five Worst States To Speed In

Posted in driving, Lists, Police, Travel by Kurt Ernst | May 11th, 2011 | 13 Responses |

Image: Fábio Pozzebom, Agência Brasil

Mike and I are just back from One Lap of America. In case you’re not familiar with the event, it involves driving ten or so events at about eight different tracks over an eight day period. Race tracks in the United States are not conveniently located next to one another, and part of the One Lap Challenge is the transit legs. One leg in this year’s event involved driving nearly 700 miles after racing two events; in other words, you don’t even start the drive until mid-afternoon. Technically, you can go from event to event driving the posted speed limit (as some teams do), but you forgo a significant amount of sleep. It comes down to this: you need to push hard enough to get as much rest as possible, without jeopardizing your license or becoming a temporary resident of some backwater county jail. Read More…

Speed Enforcement We Like

Posted in Funny Videos, Police, Videos by Kurt Ernst | April 16th, 2011 | 9 Responses |

I’ll warn you in advance: turn the sound off on this video. The commentator sounds as if he were dropped on his head repeatedly as a child, or perhaps oxygen-starved during his developmental years. The beauty of the video has nothing to do with the commentary, but instead it’s all about the actions of the New Jersey State Trooper. I spent a lot of years driving in the Garden State, and I don’t think I ever saw a driver stopped for less than 15 MPH over the limit on an interstate highway, the NJ Turnpike or the Parkway. Still, some drivers get paralyzed by fear when they see a state trooper in their rearview mirror, and yielding the lane never occurs to them. In fact, their reptilian hind-brain takes over, commanding their right foot to maintain a speed of no more than 54 miles per hour. Read More…

Keep Right, Pass Left Could Become Law In Florida

Posted in driving, News, Police, Safety by Kurt Ernst | April 12th, 2011 | 8 Responses |

Image by Flickr user The_Gut

The Florida state senate has approved a bill that will levy fines and points against drivers who clog the left lane, even if those motorists are driving within posted speed limits. The measure passed the senate by a vote of 37 to 1, and a similar bill is pending in the House. Neither will progress unless approved by Florida governor Rick Scott, but both efforts are evidence that there is some sanity left in state government. Current Florida law requires drivers to yield the left lane to other motorists, except when overtaking and passing on the right is allowed. Since passing on the right is permitted on most Florida multilane highways, Florida drivers are as likely to yield the left lane as Donald Trump is to win the presidency in 2012. Read More…

1977 Chrysler Newport Police Car: Go Big or Go Home

Posted in Best of, eBay Motors, General, News, Police, Politics, Pop Culture, Rants & Raves by MrAngry | April 6th, 2011 | 1 Response |

1977 Chrysler Newport

At about 19-feet long the 1977 Chrysler Newport was about as big as you could go back in the late 1970’s. Sure it was roomy, but all that room meant that these big canoes (all 4,400 lbs of them) handled liked they had balloons for suspension systems. The ’77 Newport was motivated by a 440 cu in big block that was clogged up with all sorts of emissions controls. That meant that the 7.2-liter behemoth under the hood only put out 185 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque, a far cry from the 1968 version that made 375 hp and 480 lb-ft of torque. Regardless though, the Newports of the late 1970’s were all about space, comfort and the fact that you could fit an entire neighborhood in the back seat.
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Things Are Bigger In Texas, Including Speed Limits

Posted in driving, Police, Politics, Travel by Kurt Ernst | April 2nd, 2011 | 6 Responses |

If any U.S. state secedes from the nation, it’s likely to be Texas. That’s OK with me since my wife was born there, which kind of gives us diplomatic immunity and automatic citizenship. Besides, I’m a firearms instructor, so I can claim that I’ve got a necessary and valuable skill, which is critical anytime you’re asking for political asylum. In the mean time, Texas is about to give those of us who like to drive one more reason to call the Lone Star State home: legislation is in the works that will raise the 70 mile per hour speed limit to 75. Better yet, it will do away with the “nighttime only” speed limit of 65 miles per hour currently in place (Texas is the only remaining state to have a different daytime and nighttime speed limit). Read More…

Don’t Plan On Speeding In South Carolina

Posted in Legal, News, Police, Politics by Kurt Ernst | March 10th, 2011 | 11 Responses |

Not too long ago, getting a speeding ticket was the kiss of death for your car insurance. Rates were jacked up, through the roof if you had the misfortune of being a single male under the age of 30. If you had a company car, you usually got a threatening letter telling you that even one more ticket would result in you taking the bus, since you were obviously too high-risk to be trusted with company property. Things aren’t quite that bad today, since insurance companies look at a lot more things than just points on your license; in fact, today your credit rating is probably looked at with more focus than any minor offenses on your driving record. Still, points add up and no one wants to pay a dime more for car insurance than they need to. The state of South Carolina knows this, and they’ve got a plan to boost revenue at your expense. Read More…

State Farm Study: 19% Of Drivers Surf The Net

Posted in FAIL, Legal, Police, Safety by Kurt Ernst | March 8th, 2011 | 9 Responses |

According to an unscientific pole conducted by State Farm insurance last November, 19% of drivers, nearly one in five, admit to surfing websites while driving. Worse, they admit to doing at least once per week, and even recognize that it isn’t a good idea. Even more sobering is the 35% who admit to texting while driving, or the 74% who make and receive cell phone calls behind the wheel. State Farm suspects the numbers aren’t accurate, since the drivers surveyed were mostly in their 30s; opening up the survey to a larger demographic is planned for this year. If the respondents are accurate, prepare to be alarmed at the results. Read More…

Radar Detectors: Yes Or No?

Posted in Car Tech, driving, Police, Safety by Kurt Ernst | February 25th, 2011 | 13 Responses |

The Valentine 1 radar detector: favorite of hoons everywhere.

There seem to be two schools of thought on radar detectors: the first says, “never leave home without it”, while the second says, “not for me”. I’ll admit to being in the latter camp myself, while Mike Musto is definitely in the former. I once got a ticket partially because the cop saw my radar detector cord, and in my mind they eliminate your ability to negotiate yourself out of a speeding ticket. The cop isn’t going to buy that you temporarily lost focus, because the radar detector shows intent to speed. Mike, on the other hand, can give you a long and substantial list of the times when a radar detector saved his bacon. Is one of us right and the other wrong? Read More…

America’s Worst Speed Trap Cities

Posted in driving, Legal, Lists, Police by Kurt Ernst | February 23rd, 2011 | 4 Responses |

Image: Agência Brasil

Ask a dozen drivers which city and state has the worst speed traps, and I’ll guarantee that you get a dozen different answers. All of them will probably relate to the last place they got pulled over, which isn’t exactly a scientific methodology. Luckily for us, the National Motorists Association keeps track of stuff like this, and they’ve just released their latest study. Per the NMA’s Chad Dornsife, “Speed limits are supposed to be based on factual studies of traffic and what the majority of motorists deem as a safe speed. Now, the posted limit has become a revenue generator—not a safety device.” Dornsife’s group estimates that speeding tickets generate up to $6 billion in revenue in the United States, and chances are better than average that you’ve contributed to that amount throughout the years. Read on to find out which cities are the worst offenders. Read More…