Skip to content Skip to main navigation

News

Skilled legal advice with
accessible & personal attention

ACT drivers

UrbanAdventure.org 23 October 2009 120

Speed camera van I was driving around Canberra earlier this day, showing a friend from Victoria around the city. After about an hour of driving, he turned to me and said “Where are all the speed cameras?”

I had to think for a while because I only knew the location of five, two on The Monaro Highway, One on Lanyon Drive, one in manuka and one in Civic. Then he asked me where the mobile ones were. His interest being that as a Victorian traffic cop, he had not spotted a single speed camera in the time we were driving around. I replied that in the ten years I’ve lived in the region, I would have seen less than ten speed cameras in the ACT, and less than five in Queanbeyan. He was astounded, and asked if we had any unmarked mobile speed cameras.

I replied that I didn’t think so, but as I didn’t speed, I wouldn’t know. (okay, I may go a few kilometres over the speed limit for very short periods due to keeping an eye on traffic between routine checks of the speedo, but I never intentionally speed). I did point out that the only mobile speed cameras I’d seen in the ACT were big white Tarago like vans with signs saying “your speed
has been checked” on top of them and “speed camera ahead” displayed in front of them in most cases.

My friend was quite appalled. He said he had heard that speed enforcement was a bit slack up here, but had not realised just how slack it was. I did point out though that the road statistics seemed to indicate that there were relatively few fatalities in the ACT. He argued back that for the population size the number of deaths per ten thousand people was probably higher in the ACT that most places except for the Northern Territory which, according to him, consistently has the highest number of deaths per capita of any state. Then he pointed out that technically NT is now a state, which I knew anyway, but figured I’d mention it anyway.

As we drove he pointed out a multitude of traffic infringements of drivers over a one hour period. These included:

  • 64 cases of drivers not indicating left when leaving a round about. (yes, we went around lots of round abouts)
  • 13 drivers who did not indicate when changing lanes
  • 4 drivers who did not indicate when turning.
  • 7 drivers not indicating when merging.
  • 4 drivers using their mobile phone when driving.
  • 1 driver turning against a do not enter sign.
  • 2 drivers who failed to give way to pedestrians at traffic lights while turning.
  • 3 drivers who did not wait for pedestrians to clear a zebra crossing before moving on.
  • 6 probable cases of drivers exceeding the speed limit in a school zone.
  • 2 probable cases of drivers probably exceeding the speed limit by 20 km/h, both on Hindmarsh Road hill.
  • 1 cyclist not stopping for red lights. (but for two lights)
  • 3 cyclists including 2 chidren not dismounting at lights.
  • Countless pedestrians walking through “do not walk” signs / symbols.
  • 2 seperate traffic accidents in almost the same sppot just under an hour apart.

Of course, in legal speak those are all “alleged”.

  • Now I’m not saying any drivers from any particular geographic are of Australia
    are any better or worse than any others. But I am interested in people’s opinions
    on this.
  • Do you think ACT region drivers are better or worse than drivers from other
    parts of Australia?
  • Do you think there is anything that ACT region drivers do better or worse
    than drivers from other parts of Australia?
  • Do you think we already have enough speed cameras? Or that we need more?
  • And what do you think about unmarked mobile speed cameras? Good for us,
    or a pain?
  • Finally, do you think penalties for driving while using a non hands free
    mobile phone are harsh enough, or too harsh?

And please, unless you have definitive proof from reputable sources that you do provide a link to, please keep your answers racism and sexism free. I don’t have an opinion on much of those questions myself, but I am interested in what other people’s opinions are.


What's Your Opinion?


Please login to post your comments, or connect with
120 Responses to ACT drivers
Filter
Order
schmeah schmeah 12:46 pm 27 Oct 09

Clown Killer – where do you get off thinking it’s ok to drive at 140km/h?! Are you so proud you had to publicise this action?

What was the speed limit – 100km/h?! You’re an idiot and if you don’t kill yourself, you’ll kill someone else. How would that sit in your precious conscience!

And no doubt you’re thinking – ‘I’m a good driver, I have total control when I drive over the limit’. WRONG. This doesn’t make you a good driver, it makes you a selfish, thoughtless, inconsiderate Arse Clown.

Too bad that cop didn’t give you a ticket and take away multiple points on your licence so meat heads like yourself might actually learn something (or just be barred from driving full stop).

bileduct bileduct 5:25 pm 27 Oct 09

schmeah said :

Clown Killer – where do you get off thinking it’s ok to drive at 140km/h?!

Disgraceful behaviour, isn’t it. I hope there were two lanes, I would have been quite aggravated sitting on this Sunday driver’s arse.

el el 7:54 pm 27 Oct 09

bileduct said :

schmeah said :

Clown Killer – where do you get off thinking it’s ok to drive at 140km/h?!

Disgraceful behaviour, isn’t it. I hope there were two lanes, I would have been quite aggravated sitting on this Sunday driver’s arse.

Indeed. Hope he wasn’t sitting in the right hand lane while going so slowly.

Clown Killer Clown Killer 11:03 pm 27 Oct 09

Schmeah, keep up the incandescent indignation – it’s a look that suits you

VYBerlinaV8_the_one_they_all_copy VYBerlinaV8_the_one_they_all_copy 9:48 am 28 Oct 09

There are plenty of places in the world where traffic moves at 140km/h or more. And there are times when it is ok to do so. The speed limit in NT on the main north-south highway is now 130km/h. The reduced it from ‘unlimited’ a few years ago (and fatalities have actually increased).

Assuming you are safe because you don’t exceed the speed limit is one of the reasons 1800 Australians die each year on our roads. Use your brain.

SyntaxEra SyntaxEra 12:42 pm 28 Oct 09

Tailgating, speeding, not indicating, yadda-yadda. You all do it.

So here’s my rant:
Are you one of the people who come shooting down past others in the right hand lane, doing 80 in a 60 zone, only to jump on the breaks and try to slip in front of me to make a left turn? Well I aint moving spanky, get to the back of the line maggot. If you tried that s**t on me in a queue at the supermarket I’d knock you out. Do it to me on the road and expect the same result.

If you cannot fit 2 car spaces between you and the car in front, you are tailgating! Well handbrakes don’t activate a vehicles brake lights, so try it with me and you’ll be flywall deep into my boot.

Do you have a P plate? You’re an idiot. Next!

Woman? DO YOUR FREAKIN MAKEUP AT HOME YOU RETARD!

Nuff’said.

bileduct bileduct 1:47 pm 28 Oct 09

SyntaxEra said :

So here’s my rant:
Are you one of the people who come shooting down past others in the right hand lane, doing 80 in a 60 zone, only to jump on the breaks and try to slip in front of me to make a left turn?

Yes, I do this all the time. The look on your face is priceless.

VYBerlinaV8_the_one_they_all_copy VYBerlinaV8_the_one_they_all_copy 3:55 pm 28 Oct 09

And I’m the bitch doing her makeup in the rearview mirror!

montana montana 2:15 pm 29 Oct 09

you need a new friend

schmeah schmeah 4:32 pm 30 Oct 09

blah blah blah!

Tooks Tooks 7:33 pm 30 Oct 09

schmeah said :

blah blah blah!

“RiotACT welcomes constructive, thoughtful and positive comments.”

Wow. Looks like you ticked all the boxes ;P

bigred bigred 9:31 pm 30 Oct 09

Just acept that every one is out to et you, that you are responsible for your own safety and the rules are only really guidelines and you will probably be OK.

astrosapien astrosapien 8:41 am 05 Nov 09

bigred said :

Just acept that every one is out to et you, that you are responsible for your own safety and the rules are only really guidelines and you will probably be OK.

The “rules are only really guidelines”!?!

Hands down, one of the dumbest things I’ve EVER seen or heard…

My hat goes off to you… You just reached an all new height of stupidity…

Sgt.Bungers Sgt.Bungers 12:35 pm 05 Nov 09

Wow don’t know how I missed this post! Anyway prepare for the longest rebuttal ever.

* 64 cases of drivers not indicating left when leaving a round about. (yes, we went around lots of round abouts)

Very lazy practice I’ll admit, and also inconsiderate to other road users attempting to enter a busy round about. However despite being inconsiderate, is it really that dangerous? Would you or anyone else enter a round about if there was a vehicle approaching you with no indicator on? No because you don’t know what the driver is going to do. Would you enter it if they did have one on? Far more likely… but what if they’d forgotten to cancel the indicator and were indicating incorrectly? You’d be involved in a crash, and you may be partly to blame for not giving way to a vehicle already in the round about.

* 13 drivers who did not indicate when changing lanes

This is lazy driving at it’s finest. Drivers who don’t indicate have no regard for anyone who may inadvertently be in their blind spot. Sitting in someone’s blind spot is a bad idea, but at times it can be difficult to avoid in heavy traffic. That said, how are your mates speed cameras going to stop this?

* 4 drivers who did not indicate when turning.

Refer to round about comment… of course indicating prior to turning also aids drivers behind in telling them what you’re about to do before you start to brake. However someone following at a safe distance behind wont have an issue with a driver gradually slowing to make an indicated turn, or even someone braking heavily without their indicator on.

* 7 drivers not indicating when merging.

A polite formality, but only essential if other road users aren’t paying attention to the road properly. If a driver is forced to merge due to a lane ending, where else are they going to go but into the continuing lane next to them, or “zipper up” at a form one lane. If all drivers in the area are paying proper attention to the road, the need for an indicator here would be completely eliminated. Unfortunately it’s not easy to book a person for not paying propper attention to the road unless they cause a crash.

* 4 drivers using their mobile phone when driving.

Were these people on hands free or using car kits? Both are equally dangerous. Australia’s mobile phone car kit laws are absurd. It’s the conversation that distracts people, having only one hand on the wheel is a side issue. Ban people from using mobile phones at all while driving, and they’re far less likely to wind up in a situation where they’re going to need both hands on the wheel to take evasive action.

* 1 driver turning against a do not enter sign.

Silly thing to do and possibly dangerous depending on circumstance.

* 2 drivers who failed to give way to pedestrians at traffic lights while turning.

A very dangerous practice. A result of the protected “bubble” effect that people receive when they’re in a metal cage. Overseas studies show that people driving convertibles are four times less likely to beep their horn at other people, as they’re not as isolated from the negative feedback they’re likely to receive. I wonder if the same is true in regards to correctly giving way to people on foot.

* 3 drivers who did not wait for pedestrians to clear a zebra crossing before moving on.

Is that illegal at the moment? The NSW RTA website has a gif image showing international visitors how to use a pedestrian crossing. http://www.rta.nsw.gov.au/rulesregulations/internationalinterstate/pedestrians.html. Note how the white car clearly proceeds before the pedestrian has exited the crossing.

* 6 probable cases of drivers exceeding the speed limit in a school zone.

Change the law to say that any driver who hits and kills a child in an active school zone regardless of circumstance receives a manslaughter charge with minimum prison sentence, and the speed limit could safely be set at 200km/h… it can be guaranteed that so long as the law was well publicised, very few drivers would pass through an active school zone at above walking pace. Current road rules regarding pedestrians are quite slack, and in many cases are designed to protect motor vehicle operators from people on foot. IMHO, this should be the other way around in any commercial, residential, or industrial area, or indeed anywhere with high amounts of pedestrian activity. Anyone opting to get around using the most dangerous form of transport available, should have 100% of the burden not to hit anyone else. Implement laws like this and walking and cycling will suddenly become a far more attractive way of getting around, aiding in combating Australia’s obesity epedemic, and our high levels of green house gas emissions.

* 2 probable cases of drivers probably exceeding the speed limit by 20 km/h, both on Hindmarsh Road hill.

So? That road is 5 lanes wide, and except for the Mugga Way intersection at the top of the hill leading into red hill, that particular part of hindmarsh is limited access. Parkes way/William Hovell has a 90km/h speed limit through several sets of traffic lights. Why does this part of Hindmarsh not also have a higher speed limit? If the Mugga Way intersection was upgraded to include a proper merge lane, there is no reason the speed limit on Hindmarsh could not be 90km/h between Tyagarah Street and Canberra Ave. Given the volume of trucks that use the road, a seperate truck limit of 60-70km/h on the downhill stretches would be appropriate, but that can be said even now with the 80km/h general limit. Impement a speed limit that is reasonable, and far more people are likely to obey it.

* 1 cyclist not stopping for red lights. (but for two lights)

Speed cameras won’t stop that…

* 3 cyclists including 2 chidren not dismounting at lights.

A pet peeve of mine that people using bicycles are expected to dismount left right and centre in this country. 0.8% of trips in Australia are made by bicycle, this figure is over 50% in many DEVELOPED countries overseas. Am I correct in thinking that one of the reasons for this low figure in Aus is that cyclists have few rights under Australian law and are in fact considered “wheeled pedestrians”? It also creates tension between motor vehicle users and bicycle users, as tall poppy syndrome suffering idiots in cars resent people on bicycles making progress as a result of not obeying a stupid law that shouldn’t exsist in the first place.

* Countless pedestrians walking through “do not walk” signs / symbols.

Another pet peeve is the law regarding this. With the exception of motorways, a person on foot should have the right to walk through any public space without hindrance. Naturally self preservation would mean people wouldn’t walk into the path of cars, but when it is clear there are no vehicles approaching, a person on foot should be free to cross the road, regardless of which diode or thin bit of metal is glowing on the other side. In the UK, where their citizens have a bill of rights, it took a while for pedestrian traffic signals to come into effect. Initially in places like Australia, “Don’t Walk” signals were used to control people on foot trying to cross roads. This instruction was in fact illegal in the UK, given the government could not legally tell a person on foot, they were not allowed to use a public road. Hence the “Red Man” was invented. The red man in the UK legally means “WAIT”. It does not mean “Do not proceed” Big difference. I’m having trouble finding a reference for this, I read it a long time ago. You have to admit however it would be a rather extravagant thing for me to make up 🙂

* 2 seperate traffic accidents in almost the same sppot just under an hour apart.

Out of curiosity, where were these crashes? I highly doubt they were accidents given it’s rare that in a traffic collision nobody can be blamed.

As you can see I resent quite a few road rules that I consider out of date in Australia. Simply put I like to question everything. That said I obey the majority of road rules. The primary exception being rural dual carriageway and motorway speed limit. I tend to sit on 120 instead of 110. I fail to see how a road that costs millions of dollars per km to build can only legally be traversed at around the same speed as a dirt road which cost $100 for each hour of a bob cat operators time.

Also out of curiosity, how many people driving too fast for the conditions, yet under the speed limit, did your mate spot? How many people did he spot who didn’t slow down passing a pedestrian standing near the road, in case they stumbled? How many people driving drunk/drugged/unregistered and uninsured did he spot? 🙂

Anyone who thinks I’m a wnkr for posting such a long and possibly controversial reply, road safety is a hobby of mine and something I spend time thinking about, researching and reading about when I’m out of the car. It is something I’ve had an interest in since I started riding push bikes when I was a kid. Back in the day my mates in yr 11 and 12 would refer to me as grandpa as I’d take 2-3 minutes longer to get anywhere due to sitting at the speed limit. I also drove with my headlights on 24/7 (and still do) Most of them were too embarrassed to get in the car with me. 🙂 Most of those people have since caused serious crashes in their life time. I am yet to. Since commencing driving, I have sat several defensive driving courses, ambulance officer advanced driving courses and hold a truck licence and bike licence, I have driven in several countries all over the world. I regularly campaign to the ACT Gov about issues in the ACT, and have managed to get a few changes implemented. The primary thing I’m attempting to campaign for now is more rights for cyclists and pedestrians on local streets, and more sensible (usually higher) speed limits on major arterials.

So I’m not just an opinionated tosser. I’m an educated opinionated tosser 🙂

OP if you were to refer my post to your mate, I’d be interested to hear his response.

Jim Jones Jim Jones 1:20 pm 05 Nov 09

Jumping Jesus on a pogo stick. Just follow the damn rules, people. They’re not difficult, and arguing about them will get you precisely nowhere.

Remember – we’re all in this together.

Sgt.Bungers Sgt.Bungers 2:15 pm 05 Nov 09

That’s where you’re wrong Jim. The rules are there to be followed, but they’re also there to be questioned, discussed, and refined. If the rules and the norm are never questioned, progress will never be made.

Jim Jones Jim Jones 2:54 pm 05 Nov 09

Yeah, sure: question, argue, refine.

But you don’t ignore the rules while the process of questioning is in progress.

In order to break the rules, first you have to master them – any decent artist will tell you that.

dvaey dvaey 4:05 pm 05 Nov 09

Sgt.Bungers said :

* 4 drivers using their mobile phone when driving.

Were these people on hands free or using car kits? Both are equally dangerous. Australia’s mobile phone car kit laws are absurd. It’s the conversation that distracts people, having only one hand on the wheel is a side issue.

The same could be said for anyone with a radio turned on while driving, that it could be distracting.

Sgt.Bungers said :

* 3 drivers who did not wait for pedestrians to clear a zebra crossing before moving on.

Is that illegal at the moment?

Rhetorical question, but no its not. Its illegal to enter a school zone crossing while there is anyone on the crossing, but a normal zebra crossing you can cross as soon as your lane is clear.

Sgt.Bungers said :

* 3 cyclists including 2 chidren not dismounting at lights.

A pet peeve of mine that people using bicycles are expected to dismount left right and centre in this country. [snip] Am I correct in thinking that one of the reasons for this low figure in Aus is that cyclists have few rights under Australian law and are in fact considered “wheeled pedestrians”?

Not to rehash a previously beaten-to-death concept, but yes bicycles are wheeled pedestrians. They often travel on the public roads at well under the speed limit, and like pedestrians (and unlike vehicles) they can often enter/leave the roadway without notice. They pay no more/less to use the roads than a pedestrian, however often feel they have the same rights as vehicles, rather than the same rights as pedestrians, and get to pick and choose whether theyre riding under vehicle laws or pedestrian laws.

bileduct bileduct 5:08 pm 05 Nov 09

Jim Jones said :

Just follow the damn rules, people. They’re not difficult, and arguing about them will get you precisely nowhere.

You are all free, Australians! Free to do what you are told!

busgirl busgirl 10:11 pm 05 Nov 09

…ho hum…

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Top
Copyright © 2019 Region Group Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.
the-riotact.com | aboutregional.com.au | b2bmagazine.com.au | thisiscanberra.com

Search across the site