AUSTIN, Texas — It seems like careless driving is everywhere, from MoPac Expressway to Interstate Highway 35 to side streets. And, in the age of car dash cameras, capturing reckless driving isn't hard.
So, KVUE wanted to find out from Austin police: Can those dashcam videos lead to tickets and charges after the driver is long gone?
It takes a few seconds of the video before you notice the tan SUV on the righthand side – stopped in the middle of MoPac.
The video shows the driver halted in the middle lane trying to get over to the express lane.
"It's pretty crazy," said Detective Patrick Oborski about the video.
Detective Oborski is with the Austin Police Department's Highway Enforcement Command, which focuses on crimes on the interstates.
"It's kind of ridiculous the lengths that people would do to get onto to the roadway, slamming on their brakes in the middle of the interstate, which is 65 miles an hour," Detective Oborski said.
Detective Oborski said this driver had broken several laws.
If he saw this happen, he could charge the driver with reckless driving and give that person tickets for an unsafe lane change, possibly not signaling and impeding traffic flow.
But he wasn't there. Based on this video, he wouldn't be able to issue any tickets.
"Dash cameras are great but you actually have to see the driver, be able to have a third person witness exactly put that driver behind the wheel. So if we can do a photo line up or something like that then, yeah, we can do a charge but it's pretty difficult," Detective Oborski said.
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Difficult, but not impossible.
Detective Oborski said he has worked at least one case where the public has sent in a video that has sparked an investigation.
Again, a video has to show the driver or a witness who saw that driver behind the wheel, not just the license plate.
But, if you come across something like this video, Detective Oborski said to call 911.
"Drive defensively because there are people out there like that that will do stupid things in front of you," he said.
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