Traveler upset by Florala ‘speed trap’

Published 2:03 am Saturday, October 3, 2009

Dear Editor,

On Aug. 19, 2009, my wife and I were traveling north on U.S. Hwy. 331, back to Kentucky, after a few days of vacation on the Gulf Coast. We were on the north side of Florala, following traffic, when we were pulled over by a police car. The policewoman yelled at us to stay where we are and she would be right back, apparently to pursue the vehicle that had been in front of us.

After a few minutes, the officers returned and wrote me a ticket for driving 50 mph is a 35-mph zone. I thought the speed limit sign on that stretch of road had read 45 mph, but I didn’t argue. A few miles up the road, we pulled over at the rest stop. I was relating my experience to a local resident there. He stated that the police were there all the time and that the speed limit went from 35 mph to 45 mph as you were leaving town, but then went back down to 35 mph — a classic “speed trap.” He also stated that a similar trap had existed around the Opp bypass until some “big shot” was stopped.

Well, I’m no “big shot,” and I was caught and I will pay my fine. It is not economically feasible for me to do otherwise. So, this letter will not help me except to vent. In gathering addresses for this letter, I came across several Web sites about your area. Some of them mentioned how friendly your area was and some indicated the hard economic times you were suffering.

I’m sure all of this is true. I too, come from a small town, about the size of Florala, in Kentucky and I know times are hard. However, we do not balance our local budget with such things as “speed traps.” In my opinion, if you want economic growth in your area, increase tourism, etc., then such tactics are counter-productive.

I know have I learned my lesson; I will avoid your area from now on.

Roger Gossett

Morgantown, Ky.