South Aust. Police powerless to shut down Facebook site with locations of speed cameras, random breath-testing stations
10th Sept 2012
POLICE are powerless to shut down a Facebook site that notifies drivers of speed cameras, random breath-testing stations and potential crime scenes on Australian roads.
The site has been in operation for five weeks and already received more than 37,000 likes and become popular among the trucking community.
South Australian Police say they are not concerned about speed camera locations but the identification of RBT areas, 'hot spots' and crime scenes can cause public risk.
"Everyone would agree that taking drunk drivers off our roads is a positive and proactive step towards stemming the road toll and reducing road trauma," a police spokesman said.
"Trying to assist people to avoid RBTs by notifying them of our location is a detriment to road safety.Add a comment
POLICE are trialling a hi-tech speed gun that can capture video proof of offending and generate its own speeding tickets.
The 20/20 TruCam laser is already in use in Queensland and Western Australia and is designed to catch more offenders and provide visual proof of offending to avoid court disputes.
Independent MP Bob Such, who is campaigning for speed camera reform after challenging a speeding fine in the Supreme Court last year, yesterday welcomed the trial.
Dr Such argued before the Supreme Court that if police speed cameras were fitted with video capabilities, he could have proven he was not travelling at 69km/h in a 50km/h zone.
"The current speed guns are hopelessly out of date and all they provide is a number on the back of the machine, and that's if the officer hasn't deleted it and gone on to the next motorist," he said.
"Video camera devices keep a permanent record which could have been very useful in my case."
After Dr Such revealed the secret trial, SAPOL yesterday confirmed it was in progress but said there was no current budget allocation to buy any of the devices.
The American technology incorporates the traditional laser gun, which until now had provided only a digital speed readout, with a video camera.
It allows officers to collect a chain of video evidence, a high-resolution image that identifies vehicle make and model, the licence plate number and facial characteristics of the driver.
The machine automatically prints out a speeding ticket, allowing officers to avoid hand-written paperwork and process more offences.
The facial characteristic technology prevents drivers from falsely claiming relatives or friends were responsible for the speeding offence.
The cameras also have the ability to help reduce the road toll by plotting GPS location every time they are used and when they detect a speeding vehicle.
Dr Such is also campaigning for police to implement a practice in NSW of factoring in a 2km/h inaccuracy.
He said a constituent in his electorate of Fisher faced losing his licence and job as a result of his most recent speeding offence which may not have been a breach if the inaccuracy had been factored in, as it is in NSW.Add a comment
THE introduction of hi-tech truck speed cameras on the South Eastern Freeway has been delayed.
The speed limit for trucks with five axles or more was dropped last May to 60km/h from the Crafers interchange on the down track.
A Transport Department spokeswoman said the cameras, that were to be installed in December, had been delayed as the technology never had been used in SA.
"The department is taking every step to ensure the proposed systems will operate effectively and the data has guaranteed accuracy," spokeswoman Alissa Smith said.
"The department is working with SA Police and legal officers to ensure all regulatory changes are made before the cameras become operational, it is not known yet whether any legislative change will be required through the Parliament."
Speeding truck drivers face double the penalty if caught speeding by both cameras.
The limit was cut after a departmental report showed there had been 135 crashes, two involving fatalities, in the 10 years to 2011.
The cause of most of the truck crashes between the Crafers Interchange and Conyngham St, were put down to brake failure.
A survey conducted by the department last year 100m inside the start of the new 60km/h speed zone found almost 450 heavy vehicles of the 900 using the road each day were speeding.
The Advertiser understands the cameras will have the capability to detect all speeding motorists but neither SA Police or the Transport Department would comment if the cameras in that capacity.Add a comment