self-testing devices

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hwybear
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Unread post by hwybear »

Radar Identified wrote:Oh wait a minute... TC with this little thing you might've opened the door to stand speeding ticket prosecution here on its head:
ticketcombat wrote:Nowhere in the manual does the manufacturer state that this self test proves the device is working properly. Read the manual carefully. You will notice they go to great lengths to AVOID making this claim.
Pretty sure I read the opposite of this last night. I will have to write down the wording specifically and repost. The wording was the first line of the testing area. The manuals do not have any dinosaur tuning fork tests mentioned either.
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ticketcombat
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Unread post by ticketcombat »

Allow me:
Pressing the TEST button initiates a comprehensive system self test, which checks the numeric displays and runs a target speed simulation.
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Unread post by hwybear »

thanks TC.....I did not look at the VPD manual at all, never use that thing...if i'm stationary it is LIDAR....i did read the Genesis II Directional and is a lot different than that.
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Unread post by PbFoot »

In my profession, (medical/lab/pharma equipment technician) an internal test is NEVER considered proof a unit is correctly functioning. It must pass both internal, external and sometimes process challenge. If any one fails - it's no good. I am qualified by NIST (National Institute of Standards in Technology) as an instrumentation calibrator, so I feel I have some expertise on the subject. The problem with doing internal tests only are several:

1. Is the internal test complete? Does it test all components involved? The test circuitry was designed by the manufacturer of the radar/lidar. This could be a potential conflict. They want the equipment to appear reliable.

2. If the units internal time base / test circuit is not traceable to NIST standards, then it does not meet the current accepted standards for rigid, repeatable, scientific measurements. (And yes, the driving public should have a right to this level of verification and testing. If I get regulated government traceable standards when I buy an apple, I should also get the same or better where there are legal implications.)

3. If the lidar/radar has suffered an insult (drop/electrical surge etc.) the test circuitry has necessarily suffered the same.

4. It's tautological. The radar/lidar says itself is working, therefore it is. That is a logical fallacy. (Circular reasoning.)


If you go to the grocery store and use a scale, or buy gas, you will see a calibration sticker on the scale or pump. The same or greater standards should be used for law enforcement.
Therefore an external test to NIST traceable standards must be used in addition to any internal tests. Also, any internal tests should be approved by NIST as being able to conduct a reasonable test of the unit.

-PbFoot


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neo333
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Unread post by neo333 »

Would PbFoot qualify as an expert to testify in court as he is qualified by NIST as an instrumentation calibrator? He's definitely not an expert on radar, but he is an expert on instrumentation calibration.

I think this is an interesting and important angle that needs further development. It would be amazing to set a precedent on this suspect testing procedure.


The Laarakker, 2008 BCPC 146 decision discusses external testing. However, in this case the judge did not want to question the reliability of the external testing because no expert testimony was used to raise reasonable doubt.


The judge in the Laarakker case referenced 2 older cases where the issue of external testing was raised:
1. the case of Margaret Broadway heard by Judge Gordon in Kamloops in 1994 and reported at [1994] B.C.J. No. 3299. Ms. Broadway was acquitted of speeding in a school zone in circumstances where the Crown relied on the readings of a Laser LTI-20 radar gun in circumstances where the radar had not been tested externally for accuracy.
2. Judge Gordon followed the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench decision of R. v. Sutherland [1994] A.J. No. 316 where the court also found that a similar radar gun had not been properly tested externally before being relied upon.

Neither of these 2 cases are on the CanLII database. Can anyone get a hold of these cases?

Does anyone know of any other case law that would be helpful here?


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Unread post by hwybear »

IMHO - lots of holes in that case anyway without siting any case law that is actually out-dated as cases since then reversed those decisions. A "Lidar LTI-20 radar" gun does not even exist is the first thing that jumps right out. Testing was not explained properly.
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neo333
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Unread post by neo333 »

hwybear: the specific radar gun is not important.

The central issue is the use of internal self tests and lack of external testing. I'm interested in discussion and related case law on this. The goal is to gather information, resources and pool knowledge to potentially challenge a case on this premise (if possible).


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hwybear
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Unread post by hwybear »

neo333 wrote:hwybear: the specific radar gun is not important.
absolutely it is important....if the unit does not exist using case law of a non-existent unit is redundant. How would one test a unit that does not exist? can't be done!

anyway,
I understand where you are attempting to go on this.

I would humbly suggest that every vehicle on the highway should have their speedometers calibrated prior to receiving their validation sticker. Except police vehicles, I have yet to see a calibrated speedometer on a vehicle. I have never received a certificate of calibration for a speedometer on any new vehicle I have purchased.
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Unread post by Reflections »

I hear both of you and you are giving me a headache. :D

Neo333: You are referring to the LTI Marksman...all LTI products have the 20/20 badge...given the time of the 1994 judgement.......

Bear: Agreed, calibrate the speedos, but who would pay for that.....wait, we can tax it.
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hwybear
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Unread post by hwybear »

however, if I can find a legit case law of use...I will bring it to all your attention, maybe with flashing lights :wink:
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Radar Identified
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Unread post by Radar Identified »

neo333 wrote:Would PbFoot qualify as an expert to testify in court as he is qualified by NIST as an instrumentation calibrator?
I'd say yes... but you might want to double-check that one. Anyone who knows "more than a trier of fact" is considered to be an "expert"... whatever that means.

A good example of a reliable external test is where the police drive down the road, turn the radar on and compare the results versus their calibrated speedometer. That's done for devices that are installed in the police cruiser... why not an external test for a hand-held?

If the test did not actually involve the antenna sending a signal, the signal hitting a moving object and bouncing back to the antenna, and the Doppler shift decoded with a tangible result (speed readout), nothing has, in my opinion, shown the device is working properly. The issue is whether or not a JP will actually listen to the point, as opposed to interrupting and essentially saying "well I don't care what the scientific facts are, the internal test is all that's done so that is enough." You may need to get the case to an actual Justice (translation: appeal) before it gets heard properly. Whether the result would be successful or not at that stage - don't know.

CanLII is selective in publishing cases. Unfortunately I don't know of any recent ones that have said "yes an external test is required."
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hwybear
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Unread post by hwybear »

Radar Identified wrote: A good example of a reliable external test is where the police drive down the road, turn the radar on and compare the results versus their calibrated speedometer. That's done for devices that are installed in the police cruiser... why not an external test for a hand-held?
Lidar does have the external test.
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Radar Identified
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Unread post by Radar Identified »

hwybear wrote:Lidar does have the external test.
Yeah but hand-held radar doesn't.
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