12 November 2018

Canberrans have a history of speeding and it’s only getting worse

| Glynis Quinlan
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NSW Police with be out in force this weekend across Southern NSW. Photo: stock

Canberrans have a history of flouting speeding laws. File photo.

If you think that too many Canberrans have a lead foot then the statistics back you up – and reveal that the situation is only getting worse.

Data contained in the ACT Policing annual report for 2017-18 shows that Canberrans have a history of flouting speeding laws with almost one in four ACT residents (24.3 per cent) admitting to going 10 kilometres per hour or more over the speed limit.

This is well above the national average of 19.6 per cent of people who admitted to going 10 kilometres per hour or more over the speed limit in the 2017-18 survey of ‘community satisfaction with policing’.

And the percentage of Canberrans admitting to speeding has been above the national average every year since surveys were first conducted on this issue back in 2001-02.

“The results of the survey once again indicate disturbing degrees of non-compliance with legislative requirements by ACT drivers,” states the ACT Policing report.

“ACT Policing has never met the target for this indicator of effectiveness since it was first introduced in the National Survey of Community Satisfaction with Policing in 2001-02.”

Speeding offences increase by 10.9 per cent

According to the report, ACT Policing issued 4,505 traffic infringement notices for speeding-related offences during 2017–18, an increase of 10.9 per cent when compared to 2016–17 (when 4,064 notices were issued). It was also a significant increase over the 3,646 infringement notices issued in 2015-16.

A spokesperson for ACT Policing told Region Media that it is “concerning for police that this survey has identified that drivers are seemingly comfortable with speeding”.

“Drivers who speed are gambling with their own lives as well as the lives of other drivers, passengers, pedestrians and cyclists,” said the ACT Policing spokesperson.

“ACT Policing would like to remind drivers that speeding reduces your ability to control a vehicle, shortens your reaction time and lengthens stopping distances.

“When you speed, you increase the likelihood and severity of a collision.

“Speed limits are there for a reason and we actively target speeding drivers.”

The ACT Policing spokesperson said that speeding is a major contributor to injury and death on ACT roads.

Speeding identified as one of the ‘Fatal Five’

Speeding has been identified as one of the ‘Fatal Five’ factors which are often the cause of ACT road crashes. The other four factors are alcohol or drug-impaired driving, not wearing a seatbelt, intersections and driving while distracted.

ACT Fire & Rescue Commander Craig Perks (left), Officer in Charge of Traffic Operations, Acting Station Sergeant David Wills, and ACT Ambulance Operations Manager Mark Molloy are interviewed by the media at the launch of the Fatal Five road safety campaign for November last Friday. Photo: Supplied.

According to ACT Policing, seven out of the nine fatal collisions that have occurred on ACT roads this year are believed to be the result of one or more elements of the ‘Fatal Five’ (which are currently the focus of a road safety campaign).

The ACT Policing spokesperson said that police monitor speeding as part of their overall road safety activities and will continue to work with government and road safety partners to reduce instances of speeding in the ACT.

Visible patrols needed

NRMA NSW/ACT spokesman Peter Khoury told Region Media that if almost one in four people are admitting to speeding then the best way to deal with this is through having more clearly marked highway patrol vehicles which drivers see on a regular basis.

Mr Khoury said that the NRMA recently surveyed 1500 members from NSW and the ACT and found that more than half of them thought that visible highway patrols are the most effective way to crack down on driver behaviour.

“Once they [motorists] see them there on a regular basis they start to second-guess their behaviour,” Mr Khoury said.

Do you think too many Canberrans speed? Is there a need for more patrol vehicles? Let us know in the comments below.

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The technology is available now for governments to over time effectively stop 100% of all speeding but it will never happen because they rely on the revenue too much and also no government would have the political guts, they could lose votes!! They would only have to legislate that all new vehicles must have satellite receivers and they could send a ticket to the vehicle owner in the mail immediately when any vehicle exceeds the speed limit of the location, much the same as speed cameras but effectively anywhere. Imagine how many less highway patrols and police they would need too.

Peter Guenther12:34 pm 16 Jan 19

Lies, damn lies, & statistics!

Change the rules & increased monitoring will also ‘prove’ increase speed related problems reporting.

Lowering speed limits, speed vans now patrol anywhere after initially being restricted to 8 or 9 explicit locations. entrapment by police – hiding up exit ramps…

Accident contributing factors too frequently attribute speed when other factors are truly at fault.

Drug affected (inc. alcohol) & phone distracted, abysmal driver training program excludes attitude – aggression, absent minded, inattentive, self-absorbed/ self-importance.

And vehicle control & control recovery training/ability? Non-existent!

Driving to conditions? So apparently oblivious to unsafe, low grip, low visibility, high risk situation – as long as the speed limit is obeyed your safe (sic!!) …driver quality is pathetic!

And opportunity to practice actual driving skills – how to control a skid? Never, no-where, no-how.

Speeding is just so, too simplistic.
Of course the statistics support the revenue raising agenda.

Drove on the GDE this morning twice, to my destination then back. 90 km speed limit as we ALL know. I may as well have been on the Hume Highway , constantly being passed, as I stayed at the speed limit, by vehicles pushing 120km. This town speeds at a dangerous rate to get somewhere 3 minutes earlier before anyone else.

Tail gating. Texting while driving. Lane weaving. Red light running. Sitting in the right lane.
The solution is simple.
Dedicated branch of traffic police – a constant & visible presence on the roads.
Start actually enforcing traffic rules which already exist.
But wait – that may cost money. Cheaper to just install a few more cameras, publish statistics, and talk about it…

slickrickulous4:29 pm 26 Nov 18

Self-reported statistics? Maybe we Canberrans are simply more honest.

There was a very well-written story in the Canberra Times of the Yarra Glen morning peak ‘racetrack’ soon after it opened, with all the ‘entrants’ jockeying for position from the start at the Phillip r’about.

I’m wondering what the stats will be for this Christmas – New Year. Last December ACT Policing found 32% of drivers they had pulled over for offences, RBT etc to be under the influence of an illicit substance or booze. The percentage may be a tad lower through the rest of the year but it worries me when I’m sitting at a red light that one in three or one in four of the drivers around me might mentally impaired one way or another.

Speeding, tail-gating and texting. What could possibly go wrong?! Let’s make life even more interesting and throw in some alcohol and drugs! Oh…and we say the police are just revenue-raising. Really?? Maybe try showing them some gratitude instead! I’m not a cop but frankly I think they do a fantastic and very difficult job at trying to keep us safe. They (and the ambos) are also the ones who see the results of reckless driving and have to break the worst kind of news to the families.

not condoning the people breaking the law, but you’ve obviously haven’t dealt much with the Canberra police.

If you can’t manage a vehicle responsibly or drive within the law you are a threat to other road users and should be punished. Anybody who has witnessed or been involved in an unnecessary accident caused by reckless driving knows the type of trauma that this idiocy causes. The place for high performance vehicles and speeding is on the racetrack not on our suburban streets.

house_husband1:56 pm 13 Nov 18

“According to ACT Policing, seven out of the nine fatal collisions that have occurred on ACT roads this year are believed to be the result of one or more elements of the ‘Fatal Five’”

Are believed to be? One or more elements?

Surely they can be more precise than that with all the data they have?

This is typical of the pseudo science and scare mongering that the ACT Police and Government indulge in to justify their disproportionate enforcement of speeding. Also saying that intersections are one of the “fatal five” is almost like saying that cars are.

So how about for once they release the full statistics around the primary and secondary causes for all casualty crashes in the ACT and a proper mitigation plan? Perhaps they can start with a mandatory 12 month driving ban for anyone who has two or more at fault collisions in a one year period.

Yes the language is vague, particularly “we would take this opportunity and like to advise motorists they should slow down …”. D’uh! Who doesn’t laugh at that kind of waffle? It’s almost apologetic and coupled with lack of enforcement and perhaps lack of political will to support it no one should be surprised at the poor state of driving in the ACT.

If we take the view that any road death or serious injury is one too many, we should be insulted that the police think it is acceptable to lecture the community about its failings when they have failed to proactively address the epidemic of dangerous driving we have witnessed over the period this survey has been run. For example, I would like to see the data on how many reports of dangerous driving provided by members of the public are actually followed up – have they caught the tailgater featured on this sight last week? Little wonder 3 people (on average) each day are requiring medical treatment following a motor vehicle crash, and the long term death toll remains stable.
The bigger insult, however, comes from a government that is so asleep at the wheel (pun intended) that it agrees a road safety KPI with the police that will always be met, ie their oversight is contributing to the current situation.

A long time ago I accepted that I was alone on ACT roads, and my protection is my responsibility. I have taken a number of deliberate steps to protect myself and family and have equipped my motorbike with a camera system so that in the case of my demise, investigators have some evidence of what happened. Here is a link to an interesting situation I experienced recently: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=chE1yFz5LDQ

That fact that speed limits are wrong doesn’t even factor into it.

Everyone on the road knows that the speed limits are artificial. GDE used to be 80. William H Used to be 90.

Urban streets used to be 60

However we lowered the limits and still have accidents.

Bicycle trial failed. They allowed riders to ride over crossings and got more accidents yet the rule became permanent.

Drivers become complacent because they develop the habbit of going at a speed they feel comfortable. Most accidents (Tugg Parkway) occur around speed cameras or the dangerous merging traffic.

Drivers concentrate less when going slower, because it takes them longer to drive.

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