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16-11-2010, 21:12   #1
ironclaw
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Speed cameras in Ireland - a guide

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:



At the rear we have this:



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:



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:


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:



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:



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.

Last edited by ironclaw; 17-11-2010 at 11:37.
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16-11-2010, 21:26   #2
BrianD3
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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
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16-11-2010, 21:33   #3
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Quote:
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"

Quote:
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.

Quote:
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.
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16-11-2010, 23:03   #4
johndoc
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Couple of classics here http://www.irishstatutebook.ie/2002/...2/sec0021.html

Quote:
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.
Quote:
(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

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17-11-2010, 02:03   #5
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: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?
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17-11-2010, 10:10   #6
Seth Brundle
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Good OP. A few points though...
Quote:
Originally Posted by ironclaw View Post
At the rear we have this:

Not all Gatso vans are marked at the rear!
Quote:
Originally Posted by ironclaw View Post
They look like this and are situated on the roadside:

Just to clarify that ours are grey and not 'advertised' by using orange.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ironclaw View Post
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!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw535d View Post
: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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17-11-2010, 10:24   #7
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You can detect the laser as well...
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17-11-2010, 10:31   #8
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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....
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17-11-2010, 11:26   #9
ironclaw
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Quote:
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.


Quote:
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

Last edited by ironclaw; 17-11-2010 at 11:41.
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17-11-2010, 16:14   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ironclaw View Post
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
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17-11-2010, 16:23   #11
ironclaw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Piri View Post
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:

Quote:
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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28-11-2010, 01:59   #12
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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

Last edited by EricM; 28-11-2010 at 02:02.
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28-11-2010, 11:29   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ironclaw View Post
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...
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28-11-2010, 19:15   #14
ironclaw
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Originally Posted by Iwannahurl View Post
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.
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28-11-2010, 20:47   #15
thats not gone well
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@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: )
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