The what now? If you’ve ever driven in Italy you’ve seen signs periodically that say ‘Controllo elettronico della velocita’ with a little image of a traffic cop…
As confusing as the sign may be, the concept is quite simple and knowing this information could literally save you hundreds of dollars.
This sign, which I’ll politely refer to as the speed trap warning, is exactly that. It’s a sign warning you of an upcoming speed trap – how thoughtful!
You see, in the US, we don’t warn. We plant a small box-like object with a camera and a radar gun inside and take you for all you’re worth. In Italy, however, they warn you not once, but twice…all in evenly spaced increments.
Not only will you be warned by ample signage, but your Navigation device will also ding loudly (similar to those weather alerts that everyone on the planet seems to simultaneously receive).
With all of these helpful hints that a speed trap lies ahead, it may be easy to think you won’t be punished too harshly by blowing right through it, but think again. Fines can range in the hundreds, especially if you’re renting, as rental agencies tack on “processing fees”.
Every once in a while you’ll see a sign that reads “Controllo elettronico della velocita con sistema Tutor“. This sign may be mounted on an overpass sign and not on the side of the road. One of these things is not like the other, right? Right.
The “Controllo elettronico della velocita con sistema Tutor” will calculate the speed between both the entry and exit “gates” of the Tutor. As reader Stefano points out, if you enter the gate going 130 km/h and exit at 130 km/h, but travel 170 km/h between the gates, you’ll be worse off. The non-Tutor speed trap takes your precise speed at that instant…no calculations.
These are actually how the government combats the inevitable “two warnings…slow down…speed back up.” This system ensures you remain at a manageable average pace throughout the two points on the autostrada.
Keep your dollars/euros where they belong – in your pocket. Slow down, unless you are driving a Ferrari/Lamborghini/Maserati of course 🙂