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Letter: Driving fines should be more onerous

November 05, 2013

My wife and I have raised three children to adulthood, and I have managed a large organization for more than 45 years. Here is something I know to be absolutely true:

If there are no consequences for bad behavior then bad behavior continues.

When motorists were speeding on residential streets their bad behavior was modified by installing speed bumps. Go too fast and you tear the bottom out of your car. As much as I hate the bumps they seem to have achieved the desired result.

Obviously the people that speed, talk or text on their cellphone, roll through stop signs and ignore pedestrians in crosswalks do so because there is little or no chance there will be a consequence for this bad behavior and if actually cited the consequence is not severe enough to modify the bad behavior.

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Obviously speed bumps are not the answer to the above problems, but just as obviously enforcement is — with the required bite added to the enforcement making the fines so onerous that nobody will take them lightly.

If you are driving an 18-wheeler and get cited for talking or texting on your phone the first time fine is $1,000. Make that fine the same for automobiles and I am sure you would see an almost immediate drop in that problem.

Jim Kussman
Glendale

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