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Traffic Camera Vanity Videos

Big Brother as entertainment
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A few weeks ago it rained quite hard in the morning on my way to work. I hit a puddle in the road, and didn’t do what they tell you in driving school. (I blame the cast I was wearing on my foot, but that’s another story). Next thing I know, my car is spinning almost completely around. I was very fortunate: I didn’t hit any other cars, and slid off into a grassy part of the shoulder. The car and I are undamaged, which is more than I can say for my pride.

Thinking about the incident later, I found myself wondering what it looked like from outside the car. My city has a quite elaborate traffic management system, with hundreds of cameras on the freeway covering almost every inch of it. It occurred to me that one of those cameras may have caught my little adventure live.

This inspired an idea for a side business for the Department of Transportation (or whoever runs the traffic cameras in your area). When they catch an accident on the video, set the video aside. Provide a way for motorists to identify the date, time and location of the accident and they can order a video of it happening.

This could be useful for both the curious, and have practical uses for the insurance industry. The money charged for the tapes would help supplement the budget of the traffic management department. Perhaps a “highlights” video could be compiled at the end of each year, and used as a tool in driver’s education classes.

krelnik, Jan 18 2004

car : rubbernecking http://www.halfbake..._3a_20Rubbernecking
also might have applications here [krelnik, Oct 04 2004]

Sounds much like one of mine http://www.halfbake...0_22Reality_20TV_22
[DrCurry, Oct 04 2004]

Terrible driver? http://www.televisi...eformats.php?pog=22
15 minutes of fame. [Letsbuildafort, Oct 04 2004]

who won this last night? http://news.scotsma...res.cfm?id=66872004
[po, Oct 04 2004]

Sydney Traffic Cameras http://www.rta.nsw.gov.au/trafficreports/
Not what you're thinking, but maybe interesting [Detly, Jun 16 2005]

[link]






       I remember FOX, LTC and the Discovery Channel running hour-long specials on "The world's worst drivers" and "the world's most dangerous drives" ... link goes to a televised "worst driver competition."
Letsbuildafort, Jan 18 2004
  

       I hope I never make one of those shows.
krelnik, Jan 19 2004
  

       The law should require that all cameras that monitor public places are available online. It wouldn't be an invasion of privacy as long as the places are marked or people can reasonably expect that cameras are around (as for parking garages or intersections). Instead it would be an educational alternative to professional wrestling shows and reduce the Big Brother feeling, because now you know just as much as the Big Brother.
kbecker, Jan 19 2004
  
      
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