8/16/2009Camera Attacks in Tennessee, Australia, Italy, Latvia, Spain, UK
Speed cameras are shot, rammed, burned and smashed in Tennessee and throughout Europe this week.
A notorious speed camera in New South Wales, Australia was set on fire early Wednesday morning, Free News reported. The device was located in Mosman, a northern suburb of Sydney, on Spit Road. It had been one of the most profitable cameras in the area, generating over a million in annual revenue for the state. At the same time, the cameras in the area have generated controversy. In 2005, officials were caught issuing tickets to bus drivers for speeds the buses were incapable of reaching.
This was the fifth attack so far this year. Two weeks ago vigilantes set fire to the speed camera on Warringah Road at Forrestville. In July, the camera on Pittwater Road was burned. In June, a pair of cameras near Narrabeen Public School were burned. The damage total is estimated at $35,000 and police have no idea who might be responsible.
A similar fire attack damaged a speed camera in Suffolk, UK last Sunday at 2:35am, the Eastern Daily Press reported. The device had been located on the A140 Norwich Road near Diss. Police have no suspects.
In Malaga, Spain, a driver was fined 1568 euros (US $2241) this week after being convicted of smashing a mobile speed camera at 4am on March 8, ADN reported. The device located on Calle Pacifico had photographed the man's car and because it was the last vehicle on the roll of film, police assumed he was responsible. The man insisted he was innocent, but a man in a nearby hotel claimed to have witnessed the incident.
Police outside Rome, Italy have also accused a three men of attacking a speed camera with a pickax last Tuesday, Corriere Della Sera reported. The men aged 25, 31 and 32 climbed up the thirteen-foot pole and began whacking the camera on the via di Coccia di Morto in Fiumicino. Police arrived on the scene before they had finished and charged the trio with aggravated damage.
On Wednesday evening, a vigilante shot a speed camera in Daugavpils, Latvia, according to TVNET. The device was located on Daugava Street. The incident happened just one week after the Ministry of the Interior announced their intention to deploy more than one hundred speed cameras on the roads throughout the country. Police have no suspects.
In Clarksville, Tennessee an unidentified vehicle rammed a red light camera on August 1. The device, owned and operated by Australia's Redflex Traffic Systems, was stationed at the intersection of Wilma Rudolph Boulevard and Dunbar Cave Road, WSMV-TV reported. The device will cost $20,000 to replace. Police released a grainy video (see photo) of the incident taken by a red light camera across the street which records video 24 hours a day.