The latest data on speed camera fines in Victoria was released last week, which shows that while the number of fines has hit a four year low, the total revenue generated by speed cameras has hit a four year high.
Revenue from speeding fines totaled $293 million in 2012-13. Much of the increases over the past four years have come from fixed speed and red light cameras rather than mobile cameras.
In 2009-10, 43.5% of all speed camera revenue came from mobile cameras but in 2012-13 this had dropped to 35.4%. In real terms, the mobile cameras generate about $102 million a year.
By contrast, Fixed speed and red light intersection cameras generated $109.5 million in 2012-13 (37.4% of total revenue), up from $73.5 million (31.1%) in 2009-10.
However, the number of infringements issued to motorists has reached a four-year low. A total of 1,292,991 fines were issues to Victorians in the past financial year, down 6.3 per cent on 2011-12.
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THE State Government is putting leadfoots on notice of tougher penalties such as double demerit points as more than 100 motorists a day are caught speeding in school zones across the state. The rate is on the rise - up 44 per cent in the past year despite the introduction of flashing speed signs.
In recent months there have been several children injured after being hit by cars outside schools, prompting calls for heftier fines, which the State Government said it would consider if the trend continued.
Queensland Transport and Main Road figures show more than 50,000 motorists were fined in excess of $11 million for speeding in a school zone since January 2011. Last year, 317 motorists were caught travelling at more than 70km/h in the 40km/h school zones, while 43 drivers were travelling more than 80km/h.
The worst speeding motorists were caught around schools in Indooroopilly and Toowong in Brisbane's west, followed by Ipswich, Coomera on the Gold Coast, and Upper Mt Gravatt in Brisbane's south. Earlier this year, a 10 year-old boy and his mother suffered serious head injuries after being hit by a car outside Mansfield Primary School in Brisbane's south.
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POLICE have scrapped almost 1000 speeding fines after the traffic camera watchdog ruled they were unfair.
A police statement said all fines incurred in 73 minutes on June 30 on the Western Ring Rd at Keilor East would be withdrawn. "It is not in the public interest to pursue these matters," the statement said."Victoria Police will withdraw all speeding infringements and each driver will now receive an official warning."
The Herald Sun last week revealed Road Safety Camera Commissioner Gordon Lewis had recommended police withdraw 987 fines issued to drivers travelling through roadworks under the Keilor Park Drive bridge on the ring road. "Each of the motorists did commit an offence," Mr Lewis said in his report.
"However, in the interests of fairness, I recommend that Victoria Police withdraw those infringement notices and issue official warnings in their place." Police were reluctant to withdraw the fines.
"Some of the drivers who received infringements were recidivist speeders with appalling traffic history and well-documented records for speeding," the police statement said. "Some people have even been caught speeding since this incident."
According to police data, 242 of the fined drivers were to lose their licence for a month for exceeding the speed limit by more than 25km/h. Another 22 would have lost their licence for six months because they were caught at more than 35km/h above the limit.
Of the 987, 38 have received another traffic infringement since June 30 and 131 had had more than three offences since July 1, 2011. Mr Lewis found there were not enough signs to indicate a reduced speed limit because of the roadworks.
He recommended VicRoads ensure roadworks near speed cameras had "conspicuous signage". But the police defended the signs.
"Victoria Police remains concerned in relation to the poor driver behaviour and excessive speed used by some motorists travelling through high-risk areas such as roadwork zones," it said.
"The signage did meet legal requirements and there were no errors with the speed camera itself."
Editor's Comment: I'm completely stunned to see that this process is proving that it has some worth. I was very sceptical, but this outcome is proving me wrong which is wonderful to see. Leave these type of issues to the police and all you will get is a dogmatic stupid response. The police don't think like normal human beings. It's all "black n white" no middle ground. Keep up the good work Commissioner Gordon Lewis.Add a comment
VICTORIA'S speed camera watchdog has called for fines for almost 1000 motorists to be scrapped because they sped inadvertently. Gordon Lewis believes this is the only fair thing to do, because signs warning of temporary 40km/h zones near roadworks were inadequate.
“I think speed cameras should be highlighted with proper signage in roadwork areas," Mr Lewis said on 3AW this morning.
"There is no villain in this situation, it’s just about fairness and justice being served.”
He also couldn't rule out if this situation was occurring in other parts of Victoria. “It could have (happened elsewhere)” Mr Lewis said. In a report out today, Mr Lewis will recommend Victoria Police withdraw 987 speed camera fines and restore the demerit points and licences of the motorists. He began investigating after drivers recently contacted 3AW to claim they had been wrongly booked at the Keilor Park Drive bridge on the Western Ring Road. Is signage in 40km/h zones confusing? Have your say below.
He found the fines were correctly issued but there were not enough signs to warn drivers of the change.
"Each of the motorists did commit an offence," he finds.
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FEWER motorists are being caught by Queensland's network of fixed speed cameras, but the state's most lucrative speed trap is still raking in $22,000 in fines every day.
The fixed speed camera on the M1 at Loganholme remains Queensland's most lucrative detection device, racking up 150 speed detections a day, or more than 1000 each week - compared with 30 a day in the Brisbane Airport Link tunnel.
The tollway is home to the state's second-busiest fixed speed cameras - generating about $4500 a day in fines, closely followed by the Main St, Kangaroo Point, site at $4000 a day in fines.
Despite being the oldest fixed camera in the state, the Main St site still catches out around 27 motorists a day exceeding the 60km/h limit, Queensland Police Service figures reveal.
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AUSTRALIA - A road-users interest group is planning a High Court challenge to the validity of speed cameras and radars in every Australian state and territory.
A successul outcome could render invalid millions of dollars in speeding fines collected over decades in Australia.
The “Association Against Speed Measuring Devices” (ASMD) is aiming to raise $300,000 in order to pursue its case, and is calling on the public to donate to the cause.
ASMD claims to have several grounds upon which to base its case, including radar accuracy, calibration and checking of equipment and the law itself.
The group claims that the National Measurement Act (1960) requires speed measuring devices to hold a “pattern approval” for use as “trade or legal” devices and that such devices currently being used by law enforcement do not meet this requirement.
ASMD points out that breath-analysis devices used to detect drink drivers do comply with “pattern approval” requirements, but speed detection devices don’t.
In addition, speed measuring devices must conform to international standards as per the International Treaty on Measurement, to which Australia is a signatory.
ASMD claims that relatively “affordable” speeding fines, the prohibative legal costs and the vague nature of state legislation is the reason no-one has attempted to launch a legal challenge on such a scale before.
To learn more about ASMD, or to donate to the cause, check out the website: www.asmd.org.au (website opens in new window).Add a comment
Multanova TraffiStar SR590
Super cameras that can catch drivers committing up to 10 traffic offences, including tailgating and dangerous driving, could soon be on WA roads.
The Multanovas are in use in Switzerland and it is understood they are being considered by WA Police, which was given $30 million in its last budget to buy new speed enforcement technology.
Swiss manufacturer Multanova says the Trafistar SR590, which uses 3-D tracking technology to map the exact position and movement of each vehicle in its line of sight, can monitor the speed of 22 cars in four lanes.
The $84,000 device can also catch drivers for offences including running red lights, tailgating, driving in a bus or bicycle lane, making an illegal entry, failing to give way to pedestrians or traffic to the right, overtaking in a dangerous manner, failing to halt at a stop sign, making an illegal turn and crossing a dividing line.
Police Union president Russell Armstrong said the cameras were "amazing" and urged WA Police to begin a trial of the technology immediately.
"Being able to catch people for such a range of traffic offences would clearly be good for road safety, so we think this is the kind of technology that we should be looking at," he said.
Acting Assistant Commissioner Michelle Fyfe said police were monitoring the success of the devices in Europe.
Acting Police Minister Christian Porter said the Government would consider the technology once police evaluated it.
RAC spokesman Matt Brown said surveys of members showed offences such as reckless driving and tailgating were common concerns among WA motorists, who felt intimidated by such behaviour.
Curtin-Monash Accident Research Centre director Brett Hughes said while he was not familiar with the new Multanova, offences it detected put the safety of road users at risk.
Shadow police minister Margaret Quirk said the devices had the potential to curb reckless driving but she was concerned police had recently invested in "old technology" by buying other speed cameras instead of the Multanovas.
Police have used part of the $30 million to buy 13 integrated red-light and speed-camera systems for use at intersections and 14 dual-lens speed cameras that photograph front and rear numberplates.Add a comment
Drivers are using legally sold laser jamming technology to render speed cameras and some handheld speed guns useless, police say.
The laser jammers, which are legally sold in Western Australia, are often innocuous in appearance, designed to look like conventional parking sensors.
The technology works by blocking the lasers used in some types of speed cameras, including fixed laser cameras and handheld laser cameras used by police.
In its latest annual report, ACT Policing has raised serious concerns that the devices could cause problems for routine traffic enforcement.
Police say the technology, while legal to sell, is illegal if used to interfere with police equipment.
The laser jammers is just one example of the big challenges being faced by law enforcement agencies due to the dizzying speed of technological development.
''Keeping pace with these ongoing changes in our operating environment, remaining contemporary, and maintaining best practice in the technological environment is a challenge for all law enforcement agencies world-wide,'' ACT Policing's annual report said.
The territory's police has also warned the increasingly widespread use of cloud computing technology, including Apple's iCloud, can easily expose victims to ''gross invasions of privacy'', data theft, and blackmail.
Cloud computing refers to the hiring of remote data storage and software, where private or personal information is held and later accessed using the internet or another network.
The use of cloud computing allows for information to be accessed with increasing flexibility, using an array of mobile devices.
But ACT Policing is concerned many people are using insecure networks to access private data stored on the cloud.
''These communications can be easily accessed with the appropriate technology, exposing the victim to gross invasions of privacy, theft of data and even potential blackmail,'' its annual report said.
''Safeguards against this crime occurring are readily available but consumers, in the interests of convenience, are often prepared to take unnecessary risks.
''The challenge for police in this technological world is keeping up with the pace of technological advancements, in a crime fighting sense as well as in relation to prosecution/legislation requirements.''Add a comment
Victoria's road safety cameras are fair and accurate, despite public mistrust, the state's road safety camera commissioner says.
In his first annual report, Road Safety Commissioner and former County Court judge Gordon Lewis says his monitoring of the system from February 6 to June 30 has convinced him the camera system in Victoria is excellent.
"While human error can never be excluded, the checks and balances implemented in respect of road safety cameras should reassure the motoring public about their fairness and accuracy," he said in his report tabled in state parliament on Tuesday.
In the five months to June, Mr Lewis's office received 170 complaints, 48 of which required investigation.
Forty of the complaints related to road safety cameras on Eastlink and these would be thoroughly investigated, he said.
About 25 fixed digital camera systems will also be monitored during the 2012-13 financial year as a sample of those across Victoria.
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