The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

25 July 2007

It seemed like a good idea

I certainly thought it was. A Danish drivers' association offered to insure its members against speeding and parking fines:

For just 2.50 Danish crowns [46 cents] per day, the club will pay up to four speeding tickets and four parking tickets per year, up to a value of 10,000 crowns [$1856].

The idea, Fartklubben founder Poul Winther told Danish daily Politiken, is not to give Danes license to put the pedal to the metal, but rather to protect motorists from over-zealous traffic cops.

"We're a solidarity club where each member is jointly liable for one another," he said. "We believe that photo speed traps and parking companies have become pure money machines."

I suspect that this did not go over well in Copenhagen, because the club has temporarily ceased operations, perhaps because the government is looking for a way to tax it out of existence.

Still, the club made its case:

In support of his insurance offer, Winther points to the fact that 840 drivers who had been charged with speeding in the Copenhagen suburb of Gladsaxe were exonerated this year because the radar guns used by the police were defective.

I haven't had a ticket in twenty-seven years; what's more, I don't own any radar detectors or similar gizmos. But as the revenue from fines becomes more important to governmental bodies — Virginia, starting this month, is collecting civil penalties in addition to fines in an obvious effort to fatten the exchequer — I can see myself paying for a program like this.

(Via Hit & Run.)

Posted at 9:39 AM to Driver's Seat , Entirely Too Cool

At least those VA "civil penalties" only apply to the state's citizens. If they leave the clowns who came up with the idea in office, I'd say they deserve what they get.

Posted by: Old Grouch at 6:50 PM on 25 July 2007

Fartklubben? I've got so many questions and comments I don't know which end of the gaseous subject to start with. So may I shouldn't...

Posted by: Winston at 7:34 PM on 25 July 2007

In the early nineties, I was enrolled with PrePaid Legal Services of Ada OK - I see they are still in business - at a cost of $25/month for driver's insurance. They were supposed to go to court for me if I got a ticket. I paid for two or three years, and eventually got a ticket. They refused to defend me, because the prosecutor had a reputation. I refused further payments. Caveat Emptor.

Posted by: Jeffro at 9:52 PM on 25 July 2007

"Fart" is Danish for "speed"; a runner's speed session is called "farttræning." (More here.)

Posted by: CGHill at 12:06 PM on 26 July 2007

So in Denmark, they can pull you over for farting!?

Posted by: McGehee at 6:23 PM on 26 July 2007