Been pinged on Northbourne Avenue? Here’s what you can do about it

Lottie Twyford 12 August 2021 198
Speed camera and 40km/h sign on Northbourne Avenue

New speed cameras and a 40km/h zone have been controversial new additions to Northbourne Avenue, but there are a few things you can do to lessen the financial pinch if you get stung. Photo: Dominic Giannini.

If you’re one of the many thousands of Canberrans who has recently received one, or multiple, unwanted speeding fines in the mail, read this before you pay.

Raking in $1.6 million and catching more than 6000 drivers per week, the large swathe of Northbourne Avenue and Barry Drive which is now a 40 km/h zone has quickly become a real pain point for motorists – as the 24,050 infringement notices issued from 5 July to 3 August attest.

But people with a burning letter in their hand should know that Access Canberra offers several possibilities to lessen the immediacy of the financial penalty, or alleviate it completely.

You can take action online, but you must do something within 28 days or face an additional fee.

Options include applying for a withdrawal, entering into a payment plan, or disputing the fine.

Generally, individuals who have a good driving record can apply for a withdrawal. It means you accept, in all likelihood, an infringement did occur, but you won’t have to pay it.

READ MORE: No excuses for drivers flouting city slowdown

This requires a clean record of at least five years, and if you hold an interstate driver’s licence, you’ll have to provide the ACT Road Transport Authority (RTA) with a copy of your clean driving history from the relevant jurisdiction.

If this isn’t an option, and you’re concerned about paying the fine, or fines, in one hit, you can also apply to enter into a payment plan.

When you do this, the demerits will all be applied in one go, but the fine can be paid off in manageable instalments instead of all at once.

There’s also the possibility of entering a work or development plan, but there are quite significant criteria you have to meet, such as having a mental or physical disability, illness, or being subject to domestic violence or homelessness.

Experiencing financial hardship is also grounds to apply for a waiver. But once again, quite significant conditions apply to this, and you’re required to submit some detailed evidence to support it.

Screenshot of Access Canberra webpage

Before you pay a speeding fine, it helps to know you have a few options. Image: Access Canberra.

If somebody else was driving your vehicle at the time of the infringement, you must complete an online declaration to notify the RTA before you pay the fine. But once the fine has been paid, the associated demerit points will be applied to your licence and cannot be transferred to the responsible party.

There’s also the option of disputing the fine.

This should only be picked if you don’t think you’re liable for the infringement because, in these instances, Access Canberra will refer the matter to the courts.

You can also request more time, either because you can’t pay it yet, or you can’t yet decide which of the options you want to take.

Fines start at $260 and range up to $1830. Motorists caught driving between 15 km/h and 30 km/h above the speed limit can face fines of more than $438 and three demerit points.

READ MORE: New Civic speed cameras 44 times more lucrative, claims Parton

Canberrans do not need to attend an Access Canberra Service Centre in order to pay, manage or dispute their infringement, but should be advised that all service centres are cashless.

Payment can also be made at your local post office, or by cheque via post.

If you do require assistance, you can call 13 22 81 or visit one of the five service centres in Tuggeranong, Woden, Gungahlin, Dickson and Belconnen.

A spokesperson for Access Canberra described the new 40 km/h zones as imperative to maintain a safe environment for all pedestrians and road users.

“Preliminary data shows we have already seen an approximate 36 per cent reduction in the number of crashes since the new 40 km/h zone was introduced,” said the spokesperson.

What's Your Opinion?

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198 Responses to Been pinged on Northbourne Avenue? Here’s what you can do about it
Stephanie Henneberger Stephanie Henneberger 1:01 pm 14 Aug 21

장서희 have a look!

Sheree Kwong Sheree Kwong 12:24 pm 14 Aug 21

Isabella Yarnold were we talking about this the other day?

Jenaya Jones Jenaya Jones 10:11 pm 13 Aug 21

Jack Batten I’m listening

Mark Heinrich Mark Heinrich 9:39 pm 13 Aug 21

A reduction in crashes is claimed since the 40 zone was implemented. They'd likely be reduced to zero if we were required to have a person walking in front of each vehicle waving a flag. Just sayin' ...

    Mark Oz Mark Oz 8:24 am 15 Aug 21

    … and you’d accept that, Mark Heinrich? Just asking.

    Dan Adams Dan Adams 5:05 pm 18 Sep 21

    Sign and share the petition to return the limits back to 60km.

phydeaux phydeaux 8:16 pm 13 Aug 21

Briezee David, I hope the bus was OK

Jenna Lewis Jenna Lewis 3:05 pm 13 Aug 21

Erin Wilkinson Annabelle Barton you been pinged? 😂

Courtney Shannon Courtney Shannon 2:41 pm 13 Aug 21

Chris Rees for Elliot maybe?

Charlie Z Bull Charlie Z Bull 10:09 am 13 Aug 21

Will Mcinnes try not speeding first

Jonny Ivan Jonny Ivan 4:56 am 13 Aug 21

...k actgov

    Mark Oz Mark Oz 3:17 pm 13 Aug 21

    Jonny Ivan I'm not sure paying the fine also gives you that privilege - but no harm in asking 🤣

Joseph Ciccarone Joseph Ciccarone 10:18 pm 12 Aug 21

Action: Obey road speed limits:

Reaction: no fine... Newton said something like that a few hundred years ago.

Briezee David Briezee David 8:39 pm 12 Aug 21

All ways took bus all ways cyclists hitting bus one day 3 accidents on way from city.

Briezee David Briezee David 8:36 pm 12 Aug 21

As I do don't

Briezee David Briezee David 8:32 pm 12 Aug 21

Not all will be removed even if you have a good driving record it all depends on the officer in charge . Canberra connect 16 years no fines tried it was rejected. So I never drive Civic Ever ? Too many rules no parking or limited parking

    Ross Burdon Ross Burdon 12:46 am 15 Aug 21

    Do you feel like your city is being stolen from you? I'm sure that I don't get a say about the growth and development I surely don't embrace.

Luke Shaw Luke Shaw 4:41 pm 12 Aug 21

Slow down to 40? 🤷‍♂️

David Berkelmans David Berkelmans 10:32 am 12 Aug 21

Just pay it and move on

Terri Pinney Terri Pinney 10:15 am 12 Aug 21

So what’s the excuse when you drive in places you’ve never been before?

Sandy Rippingale Sandy Rippingale 8:26 am 12 Aug 21

Shannon Gibson for Charlotte

Fiona Jane Fiona Jane 10:17 pm 11 Aug 21

In over 30 years of driving, I have never had a speeding ticket or a parking ticket. Got a parking ticket in Civic a few years ago, thought it was free parking after 5pm, didn't realise it had changed as I hardly go there, especially at night and would have gladly paid had I known (never assume, I know!) I applied for it to be waived due to good driving record and it was knocked back and I had to pay.

Tony Salcedo Tony Salcedo 9:02 pm 11 Aug 21

Those options have always been around

Trev Tak Trev Tak 8:53 pm 11 Aug 21

Why would the government put in such a trap in the middle of a pandemic when the population is stressed and anxious.

Its just more pressure at a time we least need it.

Governing without a soul.

    Karl Brown Karl Brown 11:47 am 12 Aug 21

    Trev Tak probably to save peoples lives.

    Trev Tak Trev Tak 7:14 pm 12 Aug 21

    Mark Oz Karl Brown this comment was never about road rules, it was about people.

    There are alot of different people, many not as smart and possibly as arrogant as you.

    Despite their limitations, they still have right to the same freedoms and they will make mistakes that you probably won't, and the government has assured an income from it.

    The likelihood of their capacity while (at the initial time of writing) there was a genuine threat of pandemic in the ACT is unfair of the government when people obviously not as smart as you are stressed due to other circumstances.

    To make sure I am clear, I have no complaints about the camera detection. I have a problem with the timing.

    Perhaps my view is to left, while I find your view too far right.

    Interestingly, the ACT ROAD SAFETY REPORT CARD 2019 reports a reducing level of deaths in the ACT where speed is a contributing factor.

    It also refers to implementing 40km speed limit in the town centres.

    It also refers includes a goal and measurable objectives for achieving a reduction in road trauma on ACT roads through the use of speed cameras and related speed management actions, yet I find no searchable evidence of trauma at the location to support the camera.

    On the govt website they refer locations are determined by crashes/km. That will naturally leave them in an area of dense traffic, nothing about safety there.

    These cameras are nothing more than the result of a beaurocratic process, and has absolutely nothing to do with safety.

    Im sure if everyone were just like you it would be ok and this site would not be raising the revenue it is.

    Im not going into this any further with you. You are obviously smart enough to do your own research, but I will leave you with the right of reply.

    Go hard right wing, go hard.

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