New program could be the ticket out of your speeding ticket

YAKIMA COUNTY, Wash. -- Yakima County is starting something new that will dismiss some speeding tickets. Though, only certain drivers qualify. The program is designed to make you safer, but is it letting some drivers do the crime without doing the time?

It's that feeling anyone who's ever gone through it hates. Getting pulled over for a speeding ticket. Now, you might be able to get a one-time deal of forgiveness. To get that forgiveness, you have to attend a four-hour class.

"Most students are really surprised by the class," said Yakima County District Court Probation Supervisor James Dougan.

He's taught the course in the past to negligent and drunk drivers. This is the first time it's being offered for speeding. The reward is having the speeding ticket dismissed. No fine and no points on your license. The goal is to make you change your ways behind the wheel.

"Some may try to shrug the class off, but others may take it as a learning opportunity," said Dylan Foster.

There is a catch. It's only for younger drivers between 16 and 25 who are more likely to get into an accident. The most recent statistics available show drivers in this age group were in 43,000 accidents across the state in 2011.

"I think that it's a good alternative if they get to learn more about what speeding can do or what damage they can do to other people," said Randi Moore.

It's that message the class tries to teach. It's all part of the Safe New Attitude Program that runs across the country. James said he's seen drivers respond.

"They come in with one attitude, 'Oh, I got to go to the class,' but by the time it's over with they thought it was a great class," said James.

Each class holds about 20 people. They will be scheduled as needed in the hope of making an impact before it's too late.

While the fine goes away, the class does cost $75. Only young drivers who get a ticket from a state trooper or Yakima County deputy are eligible. Sign up is available in District Court. The first class will be held in a couple of weeks.