Monthly Archives: September 2014
Parents from an expensive Lincoln Park private school are livid after tow trucks hauled off 15 cars from a private parking lot near the school one recent morning.
According to DNA Info, parents who parked for just a few minutes in a nearby private lot to drop off their children at school, came back to find their car had disappeared.
The lot was being patrolled by tow trucks from Rendered Services who moved very swiftly to haul way the trespassing vehicles according to the report.
It took over a year, but 44th Ward Alderman Tom Tunney finally was able to restore paid metered parking to Lakeview on Sundays.
Drivers had to start paying the meters Sunday, September 28th at metered parking spaces on major streets like Clark, Halsted, Broadway, Belmont, Southport and others from 10 AM until 8 PM. Monday through Saturday meters must be fed from 8 AM until 10 PM in most areas.
The alderman told DNA Info a few weeks ago, the move was necessary to promote turnover of parking spaces to allow more people to find parking to shop in Lakeview.
“Saturday and Sunday are the No. 1 and 2 days of economic activity in the ward,” Tunney said. “We need the turnover specifically on those busiest days.
A driver trying to divine what type of truck (semi, junk, commercial or pickup) on what type of street (business or residential) in what part of the city or ward can go insane.
It was this truck parking issue that came to the attention of Sun-Times columnist Mark Brown.
A contractor who parked his truck on a residential street while trying to work on a customer’s home got hit with a $75 ticket recently.
Despite a pledge his motorcade drivers would slow down and obey the law in late spring, ABC 7 News is reporting the vehicles used to transport Mayor Rahm Emanuel have racked up another eight more red light or speed camera violations.
Four months ago ABC 7 reported the Mayor’s two vehicle motorcade had been ticketed nearly two dozen times for speed camera, red light camera and parking tickets.
At the time the Mayor said that no one was above the law and that he is instructing his drivers to slow down. But less than an hour after he uttered those words one of his vehicles was caught on camera near Douglas Park going 12 miles over the speed limit.
Here’s ABC 7′s full report, “I-Team: Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s motorcade caught by city cameras – again.“
It’s that ol’ speed camera “revenue versus safety” argument being discussed in this piece by NBC 5.
One driver complained, despite driving as she describes as “extra, extra slow” she was hit with five speed camera tickets in less than a month near Legion Park in the 3100 block of West Peterson.
DNA Info has been crunching the numbers on Chicago parking tickets recently.
And after going through info on nearly 5 million Chicago parking tickets issued over the past two years, they keep digging up interesting tidbits of data.
In their most recent revelation, they focused on out-of-state drivers.
According to the data, 90% of the tickets issued were to vehicles with Illinois plates with the other 10% going to out-of-state vehicles.
Texting on a cellphone while driving is against the law in Illinois.
As unsafe as that practice is, many drivers still do it.
However, it’s very hard for law enforcement to catch motorists who are texting behind the wheel.
But that might be changing.
ComSonics says the frequencies emitted when a phone is sending a text message have a different signature than when a phone is being used to download data or make a call.
The manufacturer utilized the same technology used by cable television technicians to detect breaks in cables in this new product.
While the product is not on the market yet, Comsonics says it should be available soon.
Texting while behind the wheel is banned in 31 one states including Illinois.
Here’s the full story, “A Radar Gun that Catches Driver Texting Is in Development.”
Despite a state law that’s been on the books for four years, most Chicago drivers are not stopping at crosswalks when pedestrians are crossing street according to the Active Transportation Alliance.
The group conducted a recent survey that it says shows only 18% of motorists stop to allow a pedestrian within a marked crosswalk to walk across the street. The survey claims that percentage drops dramatically at unmarked crosswalks plunging to just 5% of the time. The law requires vehicles to stop for pedestrians crossing the street within a crosswalk whether marked or not.
“Many people are unaware of the law and believe that cars only have to stop for pedestrians when there is a ‘stop for pedestrians’ sign at the crosswalk, and these signs led to much higher compliance in our survey,” said Burke. “But we aren’t going to get ‘must stop’ signs at every crosswalk, so it’s important that the public learn about this law.”
The survey conducted by Active Trans was made up of 208 attempts to cross the street at 52 locations within the city and nearby suburban towns.
The group’s research found that drivers complied with the law at painted crosswalks with enhanced safety features like “Stop For Pedestrian” signs, brick, stone or raised crosswalks or even flashing lights.
Active Trans says 90 pedestrians were killed in traffic accidents in the metro Chicago area in 2012.
“Stepping into a crosswalk in Chicago is an invitation to be run over,” said Bob Gallo, state director of AARP Illinois which worked with Active Trans in 2009 to pass the Must Stop for Pedestrians Law. “Unfortunately, this is especially true for older residents who are more likely to be injured or killed than pedestrians of all other ages.”
In their effort to have more motorists complying with the law and stopping at crosswalks, the group is pushing statewide education programs akin to the “Click it or Ticket” campaign using billboards, public service announcements and ads to get the word out.
In addition, Active Trans wants more enforcement similar to what the Chicago Police Department does from time to time in their crosswalk enforcement initiatives where they ticket drivers who don’t stop for pedestrians.
Burke admits that most drivers are just ignorant of the law and believes most motorists would obey it if they were aware the law existed. He thinks as more drivers start stopping for pedestrians, things will eventually reach a critical mass where drivers will almost always stop at crosswalks.
“Driving behavior is contagious,” said Burke from Active Trans. “Once a significant percentage of motorists begin to stop for pedestrians, you’ll see it catch on and become the norm like it is in other states.”
50,000 drivers have received speed camera tickets near 127th Street and Eggleston–the site of Major Taylor bike trail.
Ald. Anthony Beale (9th) and other residents believe the large volume of tickets being issued there can be attributed to what they say is an abrupt change in the speed limit between where drivers exit the Bishop Ford Expressway where the limit is 35 mph and where the speed camera is located a few blocks away where the limit drops to 30.
According to the Associated Press, each count carries up to a maximum of 20 years in prison.
Finley is the third of three charged by federal authorities in connection with an alleged bribery scheme . Allegedly Redflex funneled hundreds of thousands of dollars via a middle man to the person who oversaw Chicago’s red light camera program in return for securing and maintaining the city RLC contract.
Former Chicago Department of Transportation manager John Bills, who is also under indictment and pleaded not guilty the week before, allegedly was given cash, gifts, tickets to sporting events, a car, computers and even a condo in Arizona (the home state for Redflex’s U.S. division) for greasing the skids for the red light camera company.