One sure way for a driver to feel their stomach fall is to crest a hill or round a bend and see a police car with a radar gun aimed at them. Even if they are not exceeding the speed limit, their eyes intuitively focus on their speedometer and their foot comes off the gas pedal whether they are speeding or not.
Flashing headlights from vehicles travelling in the other direction is one way drivers have used to warn others of a speed trap and some states have attempted to make it illegal to warn others by that means. Radar detectors are also illegal to use in many states and the cost of getting caught using one can overshadow the cost of a speeding ticket in some cases. So, what’s a driver to do?
An App to the Rescue
With millions of applications being developed for use with the new generation of Smartphones, it should be no surprise that there’s an app for warning other drivers about the presence of speed traps. Providing information about the location of these traps, the presence of speed cameras, accidents that will slow down traffic as well as other hazards that can impede the flow of traffic, this user-to-user app for Android phones, lets users have the latest traffic conditions in real time.
How Does It Work?
The application uses Google maps, which must be installed on the phone. The phone needs to be capable of using an SD card. When a driver comes across a speed trap or other traffic hazard, they can enter the information into the app and others in the area will be instantly notified of the conditions. The application comes preloaded with over 62,000 known speed traps and fixed location speed cameras so that drivers can adjust their driving habits accordingly.
The app also has chat capabilities so drivers can communicate what they see, and with texting while driving being outlawed in many states and local communities, it can be a much safer way to communicate than trying to text the information to others. Developers include the warning to maintain focus on driving while using the app to prevent being distracted behind the wheel.
When someone enters information about police radar, it pops up on the Google map according to the GPS location of others, advising them of its presence. It can also show accidents, construction zones or any type of hazards that are likely to slow traffic or present a danger in the area. Another function included in the application is being able to advise others that the police are looking for parking violators.
Imagine you are in town shopping and your parking meter has expired, but you’re not quite ready to leave yet. A friendly app user notices the police looking for parking violators and enters the information into the app, giving you a warning on your Android-powered phone. You can weigh the choice of heading to your car and feeding the meter or to continue shopping and accept the fact that when you return your shopping trip will cost more due to the added cost of the parking ticket.