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Old 22 Aug 2009
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German traffic light cameras....

This might sound like a cheeky question.....sorry..but does anyone know if the traffic light cameras used in German cities are only forward facing...?

I'm afraid I saw a nice flash in my eyes this morning while stuck in slow moving traffic in Berlin...

I'm dying to find out if the picture looked good...maybe it'll be waiting for me when I get back to Italy?
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Old 23 Aug 2009
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Beeing German and having had quite a few of those flashes so far, I have yet to see a camera that does not take your picture from the front.

The ones for speeding might be a different breed, though. Many of them are operated by actual human beeings who might write down the number of your license plate and there are even a few who fotograph front and backside of your bike...

Have fun in Germany!
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Old 23 Aug 2009
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I don't think you ever get post from the greedy German "bright day light robbery department" ... at least not if you been flashed on your bike from the front even with your best smile in your face or erecting your arm showing a stinky finger right in to the camera......

well let me explain, 1st your are on a bike right... traffic light cameras have to get your registration plate on the pic and have to identify you in person as driver clearly as well at the same time !
had you have a plate on the front of your bike ? NO way to trace you there!
did you ware a helmet on your bike ? NO way to identify you in person !

been flashed in Germany flashed twice that way in one day on German plates ... never received any souvenir image in the post

and now 2nd:
if you where riding/driving a car... well...
regarding the German law, the city department (will be Berlin in your case) has to deliver this penalty order to your home address (Italy in your case) in a period of 6 weeks I believe may more, if your permanent residents address is in any foreign country ... I had that before.... that period will be to long to be processed and to delivered, your case simply will be dropped before wasting any stamps to be posted...
the time it takes to find out your address in Italy during the instances will eat up to much time.
For the law picker there is simple to much aggravation and a limited change to see the end or a result to trace you down... they will just not even bother to wast a letter, stamps or work on your case !

never ever received any post of the German "additionally county extra tax-income machine" while being registered in the UK while flashed in Germany...
even hence the traffic cops had my registration number regarding wrong parking, speeding or taking a red traffic light.
so... result is, that you less likely ever receive any of this ugly mug shots even driving in a car where they have to send a squat out to ring your door bell with this image in there hand to identify who was driving that car.
The German law can be very strickt to proof to find out who was the bastard on the roads...

OK the only option to get fined as a foreigner:
be aware that many speed traps are made by mobile cops on weekends around Berlin on the country lanes using high-tech Leaser guns reaching up to a mile or so, operated by hand. this cops will stop you and will cash in right away.
(the communities over there are tight on money and know where to set up easy speed traps to enrich there city cash box to get this extra 1.3 mil. extra-TAX to solve there situations...

well now... in case you may get any post of the German "speed trap, traffic light squad"... you don't need to surrender any "relatives" by name !
will say: you as the owner of the vehicle do not need to tell who of your relatives has been riding/driving that vehicle !
even your sister in law, any uncle, nephew, brother, mother, father or any further relation.... no one can make you tell to surrender any of this lovely clan members by name, that's your right, just deny that you have been the driver

remember the German law says, that the driver has to be clearly identified, not the owner of the vehicle....
the German department of traffic "has to proof" who was this wreck-less driver, there for "all" traffic cameras in Germany facing to the front of any vehicle.

have fun playing with the law...
The trouble is that he was talking in philosophy, but they were listening in gibberish.
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Old 23 Aug 2009
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Wow....what a great answer thanks..!

Looks like I'll have to ride around some more today...and make sure my middle finger is well in sight at every traffic light......

Pity though, I really wanted that souvenir of Berlin, courtesy of the local police...!
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Old 23 Aug 2009
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I seem to remember something similar in the UK where the rider deliberately gave a middle finger while setting off forward facing cameras.

With England being such a law abiding nation, no-one ever commits any crime here and therefore the police have no other worthwhile work to do, they tracked the rider down by identifying him by the combination of bike, leathers and helmet, just to make an example of him.

Good to see the German police having some common sense and not wasting taxpayers money.
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Old 24 Aug 2009
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Originally Posted by craig76 View Post
..... they tracked the rider down by identifying him by the combination of bike, leathers and helmet, just to make an example of him.

Good to see the German police having some common sense and not wasting taxpayers money.
well... OK... if you are tempted to try to get a middle finger flash on purposes for a extended times just for the fun of it while in Berlin... now the local police may get the order to look out for you.... if they manage to get your registration no. they may even try to set up a "warrant of apprehension" at the border's... (but you know there are no borders any more)...
"I don't want to support you doing anything stupid right"
I know about a case where a Swiss guy done exact that, erecting his middle finger at any given traffic light a few years ago in a car.... well he got fined at the border and banned for live entering German territory... (bad luck.. he was driving i his car with a registration no. on the front)

now just to clarify the situation about the cops.
the police is mainly targeting criminal action in any kind as we all know...

but the local offences like traffic lights and rude parking lays in the hand of the local community warrants and office, managed by the council, means the office for safety, descend behaver and health.... the police only get called in for help as a enforced power if needed.
any way the individual police squaddy will take action if they notice wrong behaver of a civilian anywhere noticed, like hiding in the bushes behind a traffic light and waiting spider like for victims....

anyway have fun... hope you are a good one hand rider....
The trouble is that he was talking in philosophy, but they were listening in gibberish.

Last edited by spooky; 27 Aug 2009 at 14:34.
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Old 27 Aug 2009
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My Experiences in Germany

I rode a bike for two years while stationed in Germany. Prior to the bike arriving from the States I drove a rental car and got nailed by one of the speeding cameras. I went to pay the fine after receiving a notice in the mail. The technician at the police office was very pleased to have me in her office and pulled up my citation photos on her computer. There was my license plate, my yawning mug, and a readout of my speed. An airtight case. While paying my fine, I asked what they do about identifying motorcycles with no front plate. She started to say something along the lines of "There's nothing we can do" until she glanced down at my motorcycle boots and quickly started blabbering about helmet color and facial features. Obvious bullstuff to cover over the gaping hole in their system.

In the following two years, I commuted every weekend from Ramstein to Geneva and identified several locations with speed cameras which constantly flashed me as I sped by at "slighty" illegal speeds. Not a single ticket ever showed up. I did get one from the Swiss for zooming through a tunnel at 2x the posted limit. Evidently they use cameras that get you back and front. The French, on the times I took back roads across their lovely country, were more effective. One concealed car was measuring speeds and a group of four or five officers a few clicks down the road were flagging cars down into a layby to write a ticket which required immediate payment. They were even nice enough to drive me to a local ATM to get more cash to pay the fine!
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Old 27 Aug 2009
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You've got the like the German police, second in friendliness of service only to the Irish Garda and Moroccan Gendarmerie IMHO. The fines used to be quite reasonable, but I hear they are a bit steep now.

If you want a useless bunch of armed tax collectors, try Spain.

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Old 27 Aug 2009
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There is a famous series of fixed speed traps at the "Elzer Berg" section of the A3 Autobahn in Hesse, Central Germany, where speed is limited to 100 km/h.

This is a 6 lane straight descent that really invites to push the accelerator.

Rumour has it that above 200 km/h the cameras were only shooting empty fotos, so the technology had to be raised to capture shots up to 300 km/h.

Well, 300 km/h is not such an unusual speed on a German Autobahn... For that, I love the country!
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