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Speed cameras in Ireland - a guide

  • 16-11-2010 9:12pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 8,012 ✭✭✭ ironclaw


    Note: All this information is publicly available. The information given is for guidance only and should be not be used for any purpose other than information


    Hi Folks,

    Seeing as there is a mega thread to do with Speed Cameras, I though I would start a thread specifically to deal with what they are and how they work.

    Speed Cameras in Ireland are in two groups:

    Mobile and Fixed

    In the Mobile category we have two distinct groups – GoSafe and An Garda Siochanna.


    Mobile Van

    These are the newest editions to Irish roads and look like this:

    gosafe.jpg

    At the rear we have this:

    speedvan.jpg

    Note: They arn't all so well marked! So look out for a van / jeep with an odd looking rear window.


    How do they work?

    In a nutshell there is a person inside viewing a camera. The camera is linked to a radar system and based on this radar system they can work out a vehicles speed. The system can work with the car going towards and away from the rear doors. They cannot work while the vehicle is in motion.

    The system is made by RedFlex based in the USA.

    This is what the camera looks like:

    844_cop.jpg

    Motoring Facts:

    Can I detect this? Yes

    How? You have two options.

    1) The system operates on K Band Radar. As a result you can detect this radar signal with suitable equipment. Such equipment is illegal in Ireland. There is no set fine and even their importation is illegal. You have no legal right to have one on Irish soil.

    2) GPS – GPS systems work by having a database full of key locations. While they are very good, they do not protect you if a van is used outside a specified zone which is HIGHLY likely. As a result they offer no real protection. They are more useful in countries where fixed cameras operate.

    Mobile Tripod / Handheld

    These have been on Irish roads for a long time. They look like this:
    Ultralyte1.jpg

    Known as the Ultralyte they are used by the Garda and operate at 905nm laser. They are accurate to above 1000m which is more than enough to nab you. They can grab your speed faster than you can blink (and some!) They are generally used aiming at the front / rear number plate or your headlights.

    The official UK Dealer: http://www.teletrafficuk.com/products_ultralyte100.htm

    Can I detect this? Not Really...

    How? The system uses laser light. As such it is a very intense narrow beam. You will have a hard time detecting it unless it is looking straight at you, which by then your speed will have been read.

    They are very hard to detect "off axis" as you need to the laser light to bounce or reflect (i.e. Off a car in front of you) If your on your own against a laser, it will read you.

    I Can Challenge on Calibration!? I wouldn't! While these guns should be calibrated every day (And the Garda in question should be asked for this info) to my knowledge there is no legal requirement to do so. You would be challenging a Garda versus the manufacturer. "IF" (and its a big IF) the gun was years out of calibration you may have case. Ask at the road side for the guns serial number and last calibration data.

    Fixed Cameras

    There are a few of these on Irish roads and they are known as GATSO's. Invented by a rally driver they are popular in the UK.

    They look like this and are situated on the roadside:

    FixedGatso.jpg

    Note: Most in Ireland are grey in color and unmarked. They mainly reside on National roads.

    They are a little easier to detect for two reasons:

    1) They are fixed by concrete so they are unlikely to move. As a result GPS's loaded with their locations can be considered to be accurate.

    2) Road Markings: GATSO's work by taking two photos of your car across a set distance measured by road markings. This is a double safety. The radar unit in the GATSO says you were speeding and the time between the shots and the distance travelled is a guaranteed.

    3) The work on K Band radar. As a result you can detect this, however be warned, the radar unit is facing away from you so reception is limited. You are hoping for VERY sensitive equipment or a bounce from the car in front.

    Road Markings:

    gatso.jpg

    They are generally much tighter together, it depends on the location and speed measurement required. They ALWAYS appear after the GATSO so if you see them too late your nabbed! Look out for them.

    General Notes:

    Detection of Radar is illegal and Traffic Corp know what these devices look like. Many cheap models can be detected by “Detector Detectors” so you will be caught out.

    Interfering with signals (i.e. Jamming) is illegal and will result in a huge fine. Jamming radar will also land you in HUGE trouble with An Garda and ComReg.

    Slow down, its cheaper!

    Trapster – An invaluable tool. This works by users uploading information about police traps. It is very good but remember information is as reliable as the source. Also remember you may be the first (and last) Trapster user to pass a trap. Available on the App Store.

    GPS Devices – Information is only as reliable as the source. Many commercial maps are more valuable in countries with more fixed cameras.

    Take Care. Reduce Your Speed. Accidents can happen due to speed. Spend your time driving safely, not avoiding cameras.

    Updates: v1.1 (Adding more information)

    Questions: On thread. I will not answer any PM relating to this post except from Mods.


«13456742

Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,635 ✭✭✭ BrianD3


    Good idea for a thread. Couple of Qs

    What is the max range of the GoSafe vans. Also how wide is the reach of the camera/radar. For instance, if the van is parked in the hard shoulder of a 3 lane dual carriageway, can it detect a car in lane 3, lane 2 etc..

    Can the operator of the GoSafe camera move the equipment so that it is pointing at a specific vehicle


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,012 ✭✭✭ ironclaw


    What is the max range of the GoSafe vans.

    I'll be honest and say I do not know. However, I would say they will get you at no more than 300m. You have to pass the van and a shutter speed is extremely fast. They can also replay the video. So its not how far, its how close :)

    If you draw a comparison to a rifle, the system would be zero'd for a distance. So they would set up and say "At 50m we call a speeder" Or "We get an initial reading at 100m and snap at 50m"
    Also how wide is the reach of the camera/laser. Fo instance if the van is parked in the hard shoulder of a 3 lane dual carriageway, can it detect a car in lane 3, lane 2 etc..

    I doubt they will park on a 3 lane carriage way. As you do have a shift effect in play (Advance trigonometry that works to the motorists advantage as it shaves off a km/ph or two.) I wouldn't argue it, if the say your speeding you were speeding. I don't know the exact radar specs either. They could be able to track multiple cars at once. The system shown did have "car behind" technology which is very advanced.

    In short, yes, the beam is wide and accurate enough to target any car on a multiple lane road.
    Can the operator of the GoSafe camera move the equipment so that it is pointing at a specific vehicle

    It will be targeting a road. So any vehicle in the view is a target.


  • Registered Users Posts: 141 ✭✭ johndoc


    Couple of classics here http://www.irishstatutebook.ie/2002/en/act/pub/0012/sec0021.html
    21.—(1) The onus of establishing prima facie proof of a constituent of an offence committed after the commencement of this section (including the speed at which a person, whether the accused or another person, was driving) under section 47, 52, 53, 55, 91, 92, 93 or 94 of the Principal Act or section 35 of the Act of 1994 may be discharged by tendering evidence from which that constituent can be inferred of measurements or other indications which were given by electronic or other apparatus (including a camera) and are contained in a record produced by that apparatus, and it shall not be necessary to prove that the electronic or other apparatus was accurate or in good working order.
    (3) The electronic or other apparatus referred to in subsection (1) shall—
    (a) be capable of producing a photograph or other record of the measurements or other indications referred to in that subsection, and
    (b) be of a type that has been approved by—
    (i) the Commissioner or another member of the Garda Síochána not
    below the rank of Chief Superintendent authorised in that behalf by the
    Commissioner, or
    (ii) the chief executive officer of the National Roads Authority or
    another officer of that Authority duly authorised in that behalf by the
    first-mentioned officer,
    and
    it shall not be necessary to prove that the apparatus is of a type so approved.


    Him:- Guilty, pay up
    Me:- but.....
    Him:- Zip it. Pay

    :rolleyes:


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,161 bmw535d


    :O i've heard of numerous cases where the offender went too court and thier solicitor asked for a calibration cert where the guard replied "a what cert"? and the case was thrown out? is this all pub talk?


  • Moderators, Politics Moderators Posts: 32,766 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Seth Brundle


    Good OP. A few points though...
    ironclaw wrote: »
    At the rear we have this:

    speedvan.jpg
    Not all Gatso vans are marked at the rear!
    ironclaw wrote: »
    They look like this and are situated on the roadside:

    FixedGatso.jpg
    Just to clarify that ours are grey and not 'advertised' by using orange.
    ironclaw wrote: »
    I doubt they will park on a 3 lane carriage way. As you do have a shift effect in play (Advance trigonometry that works to the motorists advantage as it shaves off a km/ph or two.) I wouldn't argue it, if the say your speeding you were speeding. I don't know the exact radar specs either. They could be able to track multiple cars at once. The system shown did have "car behind" technology which is very advanced.

    In short, yes, the beam is wide and accurate enough to target any car on a multiple lane road.
    The gardai frequently sit on the N4 for example which is a 3 lane plus bus lane dual carriageway.
    Also there was a case in the UK a few years ago where it was claimed that the angle of the van, etc. resulted in an inaccurate reading the more to the right that you were on the road. He lost IIRC!
    bmw535d wrote: »
    :O i've heard of numerous cases where the offender went too court and thier solicitor asked for a calibration cert where the guard replied "a what cert"? and the case was thrown out? is this all pub talk?
    Yes.
    They are calibrated and the certs IIRC (based on posts here from members of AGS) it can and is shown in court.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 225 ✭✭ Piri


    You can detect the laser as well...


  • Registered Users Posts: 661 ✭✭✭ thewing


    I have an Iphone - should I buy a GPS? - is there any maps out there with a comprehensive list? Looking at irishspeedtraps.com app, it doesn't have any cameras outside of Dublin and the info is only as good as what people contribute

    All I would want would a gps based warning device/app based on the map currently on the garda website....


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,012 ✭✭✭ ironclaw


    Also there was a case in the UK a few years ago where it was claimed that the angle of the van, etc. resulted in an inaccurate reading the more to the right that you were on the road. He lost IIRC!

    Becareful on that one. The slip (cosine) effect works in your favor. So the Gardai will get a LOWER reading that your actually speed. So if they get a reading of above the speed limit your still speeding. This effect only works if your fractions close to being over (3km/ph at most) It also is most documented in laser systems, I have no statics from radar as they are different (Radar refracts and spreads more than laser)

    With regards to multiple lanes, your taking a gamble challenging it. These systems are extremely advanced. If they said you were speeding you were speeding. The read out of distance to your car and the photo (If you argue the car beside was speeding) will rule out any discrepancies. I wouldn't fight it.

    With regards to Certs:

    As per the manufacturers (UK Dealers: http://www.teletrafficuk.com/products_ultralyte100.htm) The laser gun must be calibrated each day before duty. However this is a recommendation and I do not believe it has no legal stand point.

    You can detect the laser as well...

    Of course you can. You can detect any electromagnetic wave with suitable equipment. The problem is:

    Look down a long narrow tunnel. Now, move around the enterance from left to right. You can't see all the way down unless your looking straight down it. So you'll only detect a laser when its pointing straight at you.

    You can detect laser "off axis" but you need extremely sensitive kit and alot of luck (You want the laser beam to bounce and reflect)

    Edit: Main Post Updated


  • Registered Users Posts: 225 ✭✭ Piri


    ironclaw wrote: »
    Of course you can. You can detect any electromagnetic wave with suitable equipment. The problem is:

    Look down a long narrow tunnel. Now, move around the enterance from left to right. You can't see all the way down unless your looking straight down it. So you'll only detect a laser when its pointing straight at you.

    You can detect laser "off axis" but you need extremely sensitive kit and alot of luck (You want the laser beam to bounce and reflect)

    Detectors working differently
    Just like human eyes
    If somebody using light at the end of the tunnel , no need to catch the beam directly It is enough to see where it is comig from.
    Cheaper equipmnents are not so good for this of course but there is lots of excellent ones.

    In Germany there was a case when they found that police can make speeding evidence even when the car is standstill.
    It depends how they using the radars! LOL


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,012 ✭✭✭ ironclaw


    Piri wrote: »
    Detectors working differently
    Just like human eyes
    If somebody using light at the end of the tunnel , no need to catch the beam directly It is enough to see where it is comig from.
    Cheaper equipmnents are not so good for this of course but there is lots of excellent ones.

    In Germany there was a case when they found that police can make speeding evidence even when the car is standstill.
    It depends how they using the radars! LOL

    Your right Piri but please read my replies. I stated:
    You can detect laser "off axis" but you need extremely sensitive kit and alot of luck (You want the laser beam to bounce and reflect)

    It is very difficult to detect laser before it hits you.

    And yes, its possible to make a reading erroneous, but it was under lab conditions (i.e. Angles, distance, reflection off a road sign) It would be unimaginable in real life. But you right, it is possible.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 249 ✭✭ EricM


    All GoSafe locations found :)
    http://www.garda.ie/gosafe.htm

    Data source (backup in case garda kill that link)
    http://www.garda.ie/sez/gardagosafecameras.kml


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 8,156 Iwannahurl


    ironclaw wrote: »
    Note: All this information is publicly available. The information given is for guidance only and should be not be used for any purpose other than information


    Hi Folks,

    Seeing as there is a mega thread to do with Speed Cameras, I though I would start a thread specifically to deal with what they are and how they work.

    .../...

    Slow down, its cheaper!

    .../...

    Take Care. Reduce Your Speed. Accidents can happen due to speed. Spend your time driving safely, not avoiding cameras.

    Well done, thanks. Great research and meticulously presented.

    Your concluding advice is pure common sense. However, human nature being what it is, I can imagine that some motorists will find attempting to 'beat the system' an irresistibly attractive challenge... ;)


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,012 ✭✭✭ ironclaw


    Iwannahurl wrote: »
    Well done, thanks. Great research and meticulously presented.

    Your concluding advice is pure common sense. However, human nature being what it is, I can imagine that some motorists will find attempting to 'beat the system' an irresistibly attractive challenge... ;)

    Exactly. This information is purely to stop speculation and scare mongering. These are the units and if you want to try and beat them, go ahead. I doubt you'll be successful. Drive safe and be aware.


  • Registered Users Posts: 239 ✭✭ thats not gone well


    @ironclaw any opinions on something like this?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ph-qv4gYAE8
    more specifically is it possible with the GoSafe vans? (purely theoreretical ofcourse :wink: )


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,012 ✭✭✭ ironclaw


    @ironclaw any opinions on something like this?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ph-qv4gYAE8
    more specifically is it possible with the GoSafe vans? (purely theoreretical ofcourse :wink: )

    To keep everything in line with rules I can't give an opinion. However, any countermeasure you use or try to use is a) Most likely illegal b) The cost of the countermeasure plus the possible fine you'd get for using it would be more than possibly 10 speed fines.

    Its just not worth it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 239 ✭✭ thats not gone well


    any countermeasure you use or try to use is a) Most likely illegal b) The cost of the countermeasure plus the possible fine you'd get for using it would be more than possibly 10 speed fines.

    valid points, however the cameras must have a range of detection too. as in they wont register something travelling at <10km/h up to 200km/h say.

    any idea what the upper end of detection would be? just out of interest more than anything. the likelihood of getting a car capable of it is very very slim haha


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,012 ✭✭✭ ironclaw


    Well I can't say, but there is a verified snap from Poland of an Enzo at 228km/ph.

    Baring in mind that speed is irrelevant if you coming towards the camera. Going away, maybe but it depends on the angle. Your not going to out run it :)


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,132 bazzachazza


    GoSafe cameras can pick you up at 1000m's and will then take your picture at 100m's.

    They can also monitor all 4 lanes at once and catch 4 car's per second.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,012 ✭✭✭ ironclaw


    GoSafe cameras can pick you up at 1000m's and will then take your picture at 100m's.

    Unlikely. 1000m at tops. But its required to take a "double tap" to ensure an accurate speed measurement (At least on Laser systems which are FAR superior). They are unlikely to set up a place than requires a 1000m shot. Even so they will measure at a closer distance, then snap. You'd be unlikely, even from a photo perspective, to be snapped at over 200m.
    They can also monitor all 4 lanes at once and catch 4 car's per second

    I'm unaware of any road in Ireland that is 4 lanes wide. :confused: If you talking about either side of a dual carriageway or motorway, then that statement is pure rubbish given the central medium.

    The 4 cars per second is probably true as its a video based system, so basically any car through the gate can be rewound and snapped if necessary. But 4 cars, simultaneously, is nonsense.

    There are systems that can do what your saying, obviously made for American freeways. But they are multicam systems and as such won't be applicable to a roadside van (The expense alone). It would be complete overkill for Ireland.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,132 bazzachazza


    I'm unaware of any road in Ireland that is 4 lanes wide. If you talking about either side of a dual carriageway or motorway, then that statement is pure rubbish given the central medium.

    M50,N4 and N7 ??????? 4 lanes wide, 3 driving lanes and an auxiliary lane or on the National routes 3 driving lanes and a bus lane. ALL these lanes motorist can speed in. You really should get out more.
    Unlikely. 1000m at tops. But its required to take a "double tap" to ensure an accurate speed measurement (At least on Laser systems which are FAR superior). They are unlikely to set up a place than requires a 1000m shot. Even so they will measure at a closer distance, then snap. You'd be unlikely, even from a photo perspective, to be snapped at over 200m.

    I said CAN PICK i.e. thats their MAX range, I didn't say they would. By this I mean they will monitor you from up to 1km away and then take your picture when you are 100m away. When they actually take your image and double tap you is up to them.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,667 ✭✭✭ eringobragh


    M50,N4 and N7 ??????? 4 lanes wide, 3 driving lanes and an auxiliary lane or on the National routes 3 driving lanes and a bus lane. ALL these lanes motorist can speed in. You really should get out more.



    I said CAN PICK i.e. thats their MAX range, I didn't say they would. By this I mean they will monitor you from up to 1km away and then take your picture when you are 100m away. When they actually take your image and double tap you is up to them.

    Not a bloody chance it can pick up at that range, If a RADAR detector (Top Range) can only pick these things up at 200-300 metres, you only have to consult science to realise the range (see Doppler effect). These things use low pulsed K Band RADAR which means you need to be on top on them before they take a pic of you same as any photo RADAR device.

    Less of the scaremongering.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,012 ✭✭✭ ironclaw


    Not a bloody chance it can pick up at that range, If a RADAR detector (Top Range) can only pick these things up at 200-300 metres, you only have to consult science to realise the range (see Doppler effect). These things use low pulsed K Band RADAR which means you need to be on top on them before they take a pic of you same as any photo RADAR device.

    Less of the scaremongering.

    Your quite right.Top end detection would be a good few km however.There is one unit that got k band at 11km in downtown Sydney. These units won't read your speed at a 1km and snap you at 50m.They'll tag and snap at the same time at a more likely distance of 50m. The chance of error beyond that is high.

    I fully respect any valid arguement contary to mine but please be prepared to file a source.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,132 bazzachazza


    Ok I stand corrected


  • Registered Users Posts: 14,016 ✭✭✭✭ Mc Love


    Anyone know if the GoSafe vans operate at night (bad light conditions)? Or are they on the road 24/7?


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 60,471 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    Mc Love wrote: »
    Anyone know if the GoSafe vans operate at night (bad light conditions)? Or are they on the road 24/7?

    24/7 is the contract. The one that was burnt out was at quarter to five am sure.

    However, as its K band RADAR I can't see the reliability in heavy rain or snow being, erm, anything in fact.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,012 ✭✭✭ ironclaw


    MYOB wrote: »
    24/7 is the contract. The one that was burnt out was at quarter to five am sure.

    However, as its K band RADAR I can't see the reliability in heavy rain or snow being, erm, anything in fact.

    Thats true but I'd be interested to see a legal precedent. Laser is also useless snow, wet etc.


  • Registered Users Posts: 20 ✭✭✭ Forgewire


    Do these mobile vans use K band (both Garda and GoSafe)? I just want to turn off superwide KA band on my Redline to get edge on K band and offload unit processor.
    And how "We get an initial reading at 100m and snap at 50m" will work? As far as I know they should identify you car at the time of offence, and if the camera range 50 m thats it. If radar sees your car speeding from 100 m and then you slowed down but they still flashed you at 50 m it is a b***** because they didn't identify your car by number plates from 100m in a first place

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nGPt-AzyTcg


  • Registered Users Posts: 20 ✭✭✭ Forgewire


    GoSafe cameras can pick you up at 1000m's and will then take your picture at 100m's.

    They can also monitor all 4 lanes at once and catch 4 car's per second.

    RUBBISH !


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,012 ✭✭✭ ironclaw


    Forgewire wrote: »
    Do these mobile vans use K band (both Garda and GoSafe)? I just want to turn off superwide KA band on my Redline to get edge on K band and offload unit processor.
    And how "We get an initial reading at 100m and snap at 50m" will work? As far as I know they should identify you car at the time of offence, and if the camera range 50 m thats it. If radar sees your car speeding from 100 m and then you slowed down but they still flashed you at 50 m it is a b***** because they didn't identify your car by number plates from 100m in a first place

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nGPt-AzyTcg

    From a legal standpoint I'd imagine its Read, ID, Snap at the same time. You'd be most interested in K and Ka. Ku is a bonus. X can be mostly ignored.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,183 ✭✭✭ NewApproach


    OP, could you recommend a suitable radar detector? I am thinking of getting one.

    Hypothetically speaking of course...


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