Motorist gets a ticket and a website

Brian McCrary received a $90 speeding ticket via a speed camera on U.S. Highway 11E in Bluff City, Tennessee. He wanted a place to voice his opinion about the situation.

How about the Bluff City Police Department website http://www.bluffcitypd.com?

McCrary first visited the website after he got a letter in the mail informing him he had to pay $90 because he was caught driving 56 mph through the 45 mph zone that Bluff City’s speed camera patrols. When he got to the website, he was surprised to see a special warning letter posted instead of the police department related content he expected.

The notice was posted by Go Daddy–the company through which the BCPD registered their website domain name originally–and it informed visitors that the domain www.bluffcitypd.com had expired and will be deleted or sold in 42 days. This notice is posted only after numerous warnings are sent to the website owner at certain intervals prior to the expiration date.

McCrary saw an opportunity here. Surprised that the BCPD had yet to respond to the numerous warning about the impending loss of their domain name, he decided to monitor it over the next 42 days. As soon as is officially went back up for sale to the public, he stepped in and bought it.

“It just slipped my mind,” Bluff City Police Chief David Nelson said, adding that he knows little about computers and the more technical aspects of running a website. “If you open up a website and let it go down, somebody can buy it I did not know that.”

Now McCrary has the actual site and uses it to discuss both local traffic camera news as well as camera enforcement news in general.

I give a lot of credit to McCrury for two reasons. First, way to stick it to them! Most people walk away bitter and frustrated that they had no recourse after getting a camera ticket they didn’t agree with. McCrury actually did something about it–he took control of the entire police website and gave them a good dose of public embarrassment for losing it.

Second, McCrury showed control by turning the site into a legitimate depository of news and feedback on camera tickets. His efforts all come off as that much more sincere by resisting the temptation to turn the site into a complete police enforcement bashing forum.

Good job by McCrury and good story.

Submitted by Scott Feifer

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