Skip to content Skip to main navigation

Ask RiotACT

Charity and fundraising auctions for the Canberra community

Ask RiotACT: What should police do about rear end crashes?

By Leon Arundell - 14 July 2017 16

Ask RiotACT

Hi RiotACT Community,

ACT Policing’s 14efforts to discourage tailgating have so far proven ineffective. Every year Canberra has more than three thousand rear end crashes. That’s more crashes than are caused by alcohol, speeding or mobile phones.

Their October 2015 campaign was a spectacular failure, catching a mere six drivers for tailgating. They could have charged hundreds more, if they had bothered to look through their crash reports for the month.

Police will again focus on tailgating during July.

Should they continue with their previous ineffective methods, or should they start by charging the thousands of offenders who are identified each year in their crash reports?

What’s Your opinion?


Post a comment
Please login to post your comments, or connect with
16 Responses to
Ask RiotACT: What should police do about rear end crashes?
LocalUser 6:30 pm 16 Jul 17

Mess said :

Maya123 said :

My last car was written off by someone driving into the rear of it, and they weren’t even driving very close…but obviously still too close. It appears a large proportion of drivers don’t know they are driving too close. The ignorance is astounding.

The problem is that when you leave the “2 second gap” other motorists see it as an opportunity to move into that space.

These days when I am being tail-gated I slow down. Once the driver backs off I then move back up to the speed limit. If they continue to tailgate me, then I continue to slow down.

That’s exactly what I do, it does take them some time to get the point sometimes, but they eventually get it.
Of course you get the idiots who always go straight from tail-gating to road rage….

wildturkeycanoe 8:33 am 16 Jul 17

Driver education isn’t going to prevent rear enders as it is quite evident there are many drivers that have only recently done their driving test who tailgate. People know the rules,they simply ignore them because they can get away with it. A police presence on the roads is almost an exciting event for me as it is seen so rarely. Even when I do see them, a road rule can be broken right before their eyes, but they are too busy with other matters to care or just haven’t seen it.
What would be wrong about putting together a team of undercover staff armed with dash cameras to meander in traffic all day? At the end of the shift they can sift through footage and send fines in the mail, photo evidence attached. Most people would pay up and accept the demerit points whilst the stubborn ones may need a bit of convincing. A stern letter pointing out your driving error may have more impact than any campaign advertised on a media blitz nobody is aware of.

Maya123 9:54 am 15 Jul 17

Mess said :

Maya123 said :

My last car was written off by someone driving into the rear of it, and they weren’t even driving very close…but obviously still too close. It appears a large proportion of drivers don’t know they are driving too close. The ignorance is astounding.

The problem is that when you leave the “2 second gap” other motorists see it as an opportunity to move into that space.

These days when I am being tail-gated I slow down. Once the driver backs off I then move back up to the speed limit. If they continue to tailgate me, then I continue to slow down.

If a car slips in I back off. Doesn’t worry me a great deal, but I suspect this is why many people drive too close to the car in front. So what if one or two cars during the journey slip in front (it’s usually no more than that number, so that is the reality, not what some people imagine), but some people get very possessive of the road in front. But for some drivers you would think the world would end. I’ve been a passenger in such a car. Very uncomfortable.
I wish slowing down would work for me. It rarely does. Just angry looks in the rear mirror and gestures. Those people don’t think they are driving too close, but they are, and often closer than the car that tail ended me. Many drivers ignorantly believe they will stop in time, until an incident arrives that proves they can’t.

Queanbeyanite 8:58 pm 14 Jul 17

What JC said, not much. As the old Canberra drivers, who grew up with high speed two lane roads with no traffic die off, things will slowly improve. In the meantime everyone else should set a good example, it will catch on one day.

Voice of Reason 5:11 pm 14 Jul 17

Perhaps education should precede calls for more enforcement or stricter penalties.

In Victoria they do this well, with signage and road markings indicating with painted chevrons what a three second gap looks like between vehicles. This could be done easily and cheaply on the Gungahlin Drive Extension, the Tuggeranong Parkway, & the Monaro Highway and that would provide a daily reminder for a hell of a lot of Canberrans.

JC 2:45 pm 14 Jul 17

Maya123 said :

My last car was written off by someone driving into the rear of it, and they weren’t even driving very close…but obviously still too close. It appears a large proportion of drivers don’t know they are driving too close. The ignorance is astounding.

My point exactly…

Roksteddy 1:38 pm 14 Jul 17

“Every year Canberra has more than three thousand rear end crashes.”
And this is why filtering for motorcycles is a good idea. Take note, Canberra drivers: IT’S LEGAL!

Garfield 12:52 pm 14 Jul 17

Its hard to get in the car for any trip that’s 15 minutes or longer and not get tailgated so its not surprising that we have so many rear end crashes. I never even knew police had targeted tailgating in the past, that’s how ineffective their messaging is. Speed cameras are also spectacularly ineffective on this measure as I reckon the cast majority of these crashes would have to be happening in peak hour when cars are travelling under the speed limits anyway.

Are there any road safety cameras that can measure the distances between cars and their speed? If so replace some of the revenue raiser cameras and start sending out warning notices for say 6-12 months and then start fining people.

Put more cops on the road in unmarked cars who’s job it is to mingle with traffic and look specifically for dangerous driving – I’m not talking someone doing 10kmh over the limit in clear dry conditions outside peak periods, but people sitting 1 second or less behind the car in front rather than a safer 2-3 seconds and aggressive drivers cutting in and out of lanes and all the while too close to the cars around them.

Also, how about getting drivers to retake the road rules test every 5 years when they renew their licenses? From memory that includes some road safety points including safe distances to leave between cars. That way people can’t claim ignorance when they get pulled over or fined.

Mess 12:26 pm 14 Jul 17

Maya123 said :

My last car was written off by someone driving into the rear of it, and they weren’t even driving very close…but obviously still too close. It appears a large proportion of drivers don’t know they are driving too close. The ignorance is astounding.

The problem is that when you leave the “2 second gap” other motorists see it as an opportunity to move into that space.

These days when I am being tail-gated I slow down. Once the driver backs off I then move back up to the speed limit. If they continue to tailgate me, then I continue to slow down.

Maya123 11:09 am 14 Jul 17

My last car was written off by someone driving into the rear of it, and they weren’t even driving very close…but obviously still too close. It appears a large proportion of drivers don’t know they are driving too close. The ignorance is astounding.

chewy14 10:58 am 14 Jul 17

What should police do about rear end crashes?

More Speed Cameras!

JC 9:58 am 14 Jul 17

Probably not much the police can really do. It is up to drivers to do the right thing. And even if there was a mass of police out and visible targeting this, it wouldn’t stop most people because most people don’t even know what they are doing is wrong until it is too late.

The same is true for most crimes etc, penalties and policing are not the answer. Penalities and tough talk is about appeasing community expectations and political ruk making rather than addressing the issue.

bigred 8:04 am 14 Jul 17

Good on you Leon for trying to raise visibility on this dangerous habit. I suggest that trawling crash records does little by way of prevention. My better half suggested just last night in response to my grumbling that these monthly campaigns were being interpreted by the community at large as permissive campaigns, ie do the behaviour suggested. She also told me to stop being so grumpy about all the bad driving I think I have seen because I hadn’t been involved in a crash this century. I could only reply that I don’t to either!

So I guess where I am heading is to suggest that these campaigns are not registering with the community because they rarely see any associated action. Therefore, I would suggest the constabulary should set up an operation on a major arterial road and pull over and fine anyone judged to be tailgating. Video evidence would probably be required to corroborate the judgement. They could also add a flog light on fine to supplement what would be a nice earner. If they want any advice on how to set this up I reckon I could be contacted through this valuable facility.

dukethunder 7:21 am 14 Jul 17

Incidents would be a good place to start. I’ve always assumed all major ish accidents would attract police scrutiny and loss of points. At fault drivers should be forced to attend driver education courses too.

house_husband 6:26 am 14 Jul 17

Why not a compulsory 3 month loss of licence for causing a rear end collision? There are heavy fines and compulsory loss of licence for some offences that MAY cause a collision. Yet you can actually cause one and in most circumstances won’t event get a fine or demerit points.

Related Articles

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Top
Copyright © 2017 Riot ACT Holdings Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.
www.the-riotact.com | www.b2bmagazine.com.au | www.thisiscanberra.com

Search across the site