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Reader Polls Feedback -
Reader Poll for June 5, through June 14, 2004


Metro Police and the Highway Patrol have decided it is time to start a full scale assault on unsafe drivers in Las Vegas area. Memorial Day weekend saw 1,500+ citations issued to unsafe drivers. Do you think issuing more citations will increase the quality of driving on the Las Vegas streets?  WHY or Why Not?

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Reader Poll Replies:

*  I think Vegas is a great party town, but the driving of most people is very bad.  The cab drivers seem to be the worse.  Anything that makes the streets safer is a good thing.  Dianna W.  

*  I think increasing citations can't help but make people safer drivers. Cars, especially cabs, often run red lights and this can kill people. Since speeding isn't a large problem because of congestions, cops can concentrate on unsafe lane changes, tail gating and red light running.  Martha Mantel  Palo Alto, Ca

*  By increasing citations to unsafe drivers, the quality of driving will improve because citizens will feel comfortable about coming out to drive.  With the prices of insurance and gasoline these days, no one wants to risk a crash with an unsafe driver (whose insurance is probably already high risk and costly) who doesn't care about a fender bender anyway.  Not to mention the quality of the new cars that you see parked crosswise in the outermost regions of a parking lot, or taking up two spaces so as not to get a scratch in that beauty!  Hopefully if it is too costly or too much of a nuisance to keep taking care of tickets, those who just can't get it under control to drive safely will take the bus!   Laurie

*  No --- because service of alcohol and the general atmosphere of "more is better" (and please understand, I LOVE Vegas!!!) lead to reckless, inattentive, impatient and dangerous driving. Knowing that alcohol impacts the decision-making and reasoning parts of the brain FIRST, it is a no-brainer (no pun intended) that a lot of drivers are impaired at some level. Citations cost money - they do not change behavior....and Vegas ain't gonna put the tourists (read: money) in jail and ruin the vacation if they can help it. The citations will increase the city hall coffers ---- but driving in and around Vegas will be just as scary as it always is..... Just my opinion,   Susan Billings

*  To me...this is an easy one. Yes, I personally think it will increase the quality of driving around Las Vegas. But in the long run it could harm the tourism such as car rental, off strip shopping, and outskirts sightseeing. The reason for increased quality is that drivers will be more cautious and alert in their driving. Never knowing when an officer of the law might be around, they are less apt to break the law. Our home town had the same problem and once the town cops became firm, there was less speeding in residential areas, main street and business area. The only draw back to being hard core, was of course the complaining of those busted and secondly, it seemed for awhile we had a bad reputation as a town with a Rambo cop. Outsiders didn't come into town as much. In Vegas, as I said it could and will probably hurt car rentals but in the same token might increase taxi, limo and monorail sales.  Bottom line...Yes it will increase the quality of driving because who wants to spend their gambling cash on a fine? But it could possibly hurt sales in the long run.  Jetta Wildermuth  Continental, Ohio

*  Yes, I feel that issuing more citations will increase the quality of driving on the Las Vegas streets because this will make them stop and think..."It is worth working our tails off to save up some money for our future and then in one quick second make a stupid mistake to get pulled over and get a ticket and take a day off of work to go to court and/or pay the ticket". It is definitely worth being a responsible adult, work, save your money for much better things, save your life, your passengers life and all other people on the road and not get a bad driver record on top of it all. To the Metro Police and the Highway Patrol. "Thank you all for your hard work and keeping us safe"...  Marianne Heilig  Las Vegas, Nevada

*  People are not concerned about paying fines and therefore continue driving unsafe. Raise the fines and make them pay and they will slow down.   Sherree Ball

*  Any city needs a program of evaluating and prioritizing its problem areas and sites, and focusing resources on mitigating the problems.  Solutions can be in improved traffic controls and signage, enforcement missions, or education.  Unfortunately, the city sees issuing citations as a self-funded education campaign. If you're going to do it, at least do it right.  Get a group of motor officers and a radar gun.  One cop is the spotter, the others chase.  Keeps them all busy.  Move the "mission" from the Strip to Paradise, to Boulder Highway, on a random schedule.  The Locals will get "educated" real quick, but Vegas draws crappy drivers from all over the west, (its not just the cab drivers) so there will be a constant supply of revenue.  Now, all you need is an inter-jurisdictional agreement to be able to have out-of-state judges and Motor Vehicle Departments cooperate in the penalty enforcement.  Or, keep it "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas", and just don't come back unless you have taken care of the ticket.  Oh, yeah.  The state could hold an "Amnesty Lottery" where out-of-state violators with bench warrants for non-appearance can have their citation dismissed in a formal award ceremony.  Don Bartley  Portland, Oregon

*  Yes. Ticket enforcements are great for the majority of visitor who don't have a car or rely on taxis. While driving a rental if I choose, it's nice to know the police are watching. Dennis

More citations may have some deterrent value but increasing the amount of the ticket very steeply after the first one will give immediate shock and more thought to doing it again soon.  The police should give a warning with the first ticket that if they pay the ticket or if they challenge it and are convicted then the next one will have a potential for a heavy cost. i.e, first ticket would be $50 and the second would be $250 or $500.  Regards, Ben Oliva  Park Ridge  IL



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