Latvian Television joins police speeding raid

This week, the State Police are paying special attention to speeding on the roads of Latvia as part of the European Union ROADPOL campaign. Latvian Television joined a raid on Tuesday, April 18.

LTV headed to Sigulda Highway. In the first two hours, the police did not stop anyone. Either the drivers were in no hurry or spotted the police car from a distance.

The police crew decides to proceed and records the first speeder at the road section where repairs are taking place and the permitted speed is 50 kilometers per hour. A white van was driving nearly 100 kilometers per hour.

"96 km/h driving at the permitted 50 km/h. That, my kind gentleman, is 46 kilometers too fast. So, dear driver, there is a punishment for the infringement, [it is] harsh. €160," Māris Podiņš, junior inspector of the State Police Traffic Safety Board, told the driver.

LTV failed to record the whole interchange but some of the phrases dropped by the 69-year-old driver gave an insight into the mindset.

Officer: Take care, please.

Driver: I'll drive the same way.

Officer: Farewell.

“From his words, I understood he was going to keep going like that. [..] It was a threat," Podiņš said later. He acknowledged that the information in the database shows that the driver of the van often receives penalties.

Continuing the raid, the speed camera reported a Volkswagen driver. Driving speed: 133 km/h.

Driver: To Riga, in a hurry. Hairdresser.

Officer: Hairdresser? 127 kilometres per hour at the permitted 90 km/h.

Driver: A bit fast.

Officer: A bit fast, now the hairdresser will wait a little longer.

The driver had not been fined since getting the license ten years ago. Therefore, if he admits his guilt, he will be able to pay half the penalty if he does so within 15 days.

“Well, I've hit the radar a few times. But the guys have done the right thing. I had a violation, I was stopped. I can't complain. They're doing their job,” said the driver, Jānis.

The police had not traveled a kilometer when the sound of a motorcycle could be heard somewhere behind. Radar recorded speed: 139 km/h.

The driver said she was in no hurry – wanted to go for a ride, having recently started this year's season. But she hadn't wanted to break the speed limit. This driver has also not been previously penalized and will therefore be able to pay only half of the intended penalty.

The police said that all kinds of attitudes had been seen during the raid – accidental speeding, hurrying, and no care.  Throughout this week, the State Police will pay particular attention to speeders.

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