The skinny

The skinny: Driver's speed was high, but way under 1,000

Moving violations

Driver's speed was high, but way under 1,000

Mr. Wu of Keelung, Taiwan, was in a whole heap of trouble with Mrs. Wu when a speeding ticket came in the mail saying that he had been spotted by a speed camera doing 1,008 mph in a 37 mph zone. In Wu's defense, the speedometer only goes to about 120, so how is one to know when they've crossed into four-digit speeds? Mainly, Mrs. Wu was irate about the $827 fine — a deal, really, for 1,000 mph — and threatened divorce, according to the Taiwan Times. It turns out that there was just a typo in the data entry, and the camera only caught him doing 46. The fine for that is only $55.

Judge: Rules of road apply to bikes

Meanwhile in Manhattan, Juan Rodriguez racked up $1,500 in fines for running red lights since March. That's a total of three red lights, but he thinks it's crazy on the grounds that he ran the lights on his bicycle. "It's absurd," Rodriguez, 45, told the Daily News. "When you look at the fines leveled and the actual offenses, it makes no sense." Some say that bicyclists plowing through a red light can be a danger to pedestrians. Bicycling advocates say that they should not be held to the same punishment as cars and big trucks. Rodriguez challenged the tickets, and the judge came down on the side of following the rules of the road. And for added insult, Rodriguez also got a ticket for not having a bell on his bike during the first incident.

Search and rescue

Boy's thirst leads him to chimney

An 8-year-old boy was wandering around West Valley City, Utah, and he got sort of parched. So he did the only logical thing you can do in that situation, which meant climbing a tree, walking across the roof of a neighbor's house, climbing the chimney, and crawling down it to inside the house, where he was sure there was water. It was a seamless plan, and he made it down 30 feet before he got stuck. He was there for a couple of hours before the homeowner returned from dinner to hear the boy crying in the chimney. Attempts to pull him out with a rope didn't work, so rescue workers had to cut a hole in the wall. Firefighters told the Salt Lake Tribune that the boy was calm . . . but still thirsty. So someone got him a drink. But so far, no one knows who will fix the hole in the wall.

Animal kingdom

Bread is bad bait for a carnivore

When a red-tailed hawk made its way into an apartment on the Upper West Side of Manhattan on Sunday, it wasn't the only one who had no idea what it was doing there. Tenant Joe Moderski just ran and called police. When the police got there, they tried to catch it by luring it with bread crumbs. The hawk is a bird of prey, and never, ever hunts bread crumbs. Details are sketchy, but officers ultimately caught the bird and took it to the city's animal control center and left Modeski to clean up the aftermath. "I thought I missed a pillow fight in the hallway or something," Moderski said. "There were feathers everywhere."

Compiled from Times wires and other sources by staff writer Jim Webster, who can be reached at jwebster@sptimes.com.

The skinny: Driver's speed was high, but way under 1,000 08/22/11 [Last modified: Monday, August 22, 2011 9:08pm]

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