December, 2013

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Speed Traps Undetected By Radar Detectors


Many people are familiar with Police Departments using RADAR and/or Laser to measure the speed of vehicles on the road, but what other methods are employed that drivers should be aware of? This article will cover some of these other police tactics that a RADAR / Laser detector will NOT alert to.



Pacing is a common tactic where the police officer, while in his police car, follows a vehicle he suspects of speeding.

The officer will maintain a constant distance from the vehicle he is following for a period of time while monitoring his speedometer to gauge the vehicles speed (speedometer must be calibrated & certified accurate). Once the officer determines the vehicle is exceeding the speed limit, he may pull over the vehicle.

Because this method of enforcement only involves the police car, there is nothing for a RADAR / Laser detector to alert to, therefore, only a alert driver will be helpful in this scenario in ‘detecting’ the police before it is too late.


VASCAR on the Ground

VASCAR stands for Visual Average Speed Computer And Recorder, and is another method not detectable by a RADAR / Laser detector.

In this tactic, the Police select two landmarks, 2 road signs or ground markings for example, then measures the distance between these two landmarks. The police officer will then park where he has a clear view of these landmarks (he is usually concealed from other drivers) and waits for a vehicle.

Inside the police car, the officer will have a handheld or dashboard mounted VASCAR device, already configured with the distance between the landmarks the officer is monitoring.

When a vehicle passes the 1st landmark, the police officer operating the VASCAR device clicks/flips a switch , then clicks/flips it again when the vehicle passes the 2nd landmark. The VASCAR computer uses a simple formula of Speed=Distance / Time and will display the speed of the vehicle based on how long it took the vehicle to cross both landmarks.

Once again, there is nothing for a RADAR / Laser detector to detect in this type of speed trap.


VASCAR from the Air

Just as you may have guessed from the title, this is exactly like VASCAR on the Ground, except the police officer operating the VASCAR device is in the air in a police airplane or helicopter.

Have you ever been driving on the highway and noticed a couple thick white lines painted on the ground perpendicular to you? Often these lines are the ‘landmarks’ that the police officer in the air is monitoring, but any landmark can be used. When a vehicle is found to be speeding, the officer in the air radio’s down to officer in police cars on the ground to pull over the speeding vehicle.

Once again, there is nothing for a RADAR / Laser detector to detect in this type of speed trap.



ENRADD stands for Electronic Non RaDar Device, it is very similar to VASCAR in terms of how the speed of a vehicle is calculated (Speed = Distance / Time), except instead of requiring a police officer to manually operate a VASCAR device as a vehicle crosses landmarks, a ENRADD system is automated.

ENRADD is a set of small portable devices that are set on the side of the road, positioned directly across from one another. The device transmits 2 parallel invisible beams of infrared light across the road (the 2 beams are usually 3 feet apart), and a police officer in a concealed location simply monitors the system from his police car via a ENRADD monitor, where he wirelessly receives data from the system.

As a vehicle passes through the first invisible beam of light, the ENRADD times how long it takes the vehicle to cross the 2nd beam of light. Because the distance between 2 beams of light is known by the ENRADD system, it automatically calculates the speed of the vehicle and transmits this information wirelessly to the police officer’s ENRADD monitor.

At this point, if the vehicle has exceeded the limit, the officer may pull over the vehicle.

Once again, there is nothing for a RADAR / Laser detector to detect in this type of speed trap.

As you can see, there are many ways that the police can determine if you are speeding, therefore the best advice is to always may attention to your surroundings regardless if you own a RADAR Detector or not, because nothing is better at detecting a police speed trap than a alert driver.