Skip to content Skip to main navigation


Skilled legal advice with
accessible & personal attention

Gratuitous misuse of statistics to kick Kambah

By johnboy - 17 July 2009 18

A Canberra Times’ sub-editor has taken Kambah bashing to a new level with this headline:

    Drink-drive alarm: Kambah motorists caught out

It’s peculiar because their source, analysis from the NRMA-ACT Road Safety Trust, lists Civic as the leading sources of drink drivers with 97 convicted compared to 53 in Kambah.

But it gets downright pernicious when you consider that Kambah, being a geographically vast suburb, is Canberra’s most populous.

According to The population of Kambah, at over 16,000 is far above the next closest suburbs. Braddon, third in the drink drive stakes has just 4,600. The number one place holder for drink driving, Civic/City, has just 2,450 people.

So Kambah residents are in fact being extremely well behaved. Doubly so when you consider that Braddon and Civic residents have many pubs within easy stumbling distance of home.

What’s Your opinion?

Post a comment
Please login to post your comments, or connect with
18 Responses to
Gratuitous misuse of statistics to kick Kambah
Chop71 1:39 pm 17 Jul 09

“So Kambah residents are in fact being extremely well behaved” err 53 of them (caught) were not.

…. I’ll take more care driving through Kambah 😉

chewy14 12:32 pm 17 Jul 09

Thanks for the link Caf.

I don’t believe the journalist has even looked at the report.

Skidbladnir 12:12 pm 17 Jul 09

“…Chief Minister Jon Hargreaves’ proposal to name and shame drink-drivers…” is probably the single most terrifying phrase I have read in the CT for some time.

See you at the Christmas Party, John!

caf 11:47 am 17 Jul 09

(As should be clear from my other post: the one-in-seven Civic residents bit is complete bulldust, and the journalist responsible should have spent 20 minutes reading the report to find this out).

caf 11:44 am 17 Jul 09

The original report is available here.

The figure quoted in the article of 97 convicted drink drivers for Civic is actually arrest location, not residence (the report analysis both). In reality only 1 single Civic resident was convicted of drink driving. Braddon was certainly not third, either, with 16. Kambah was the highest single suburb, but as noted it is also the most populous so this is to be expected.

In terms of a per-capita basis, the worst suburb was actually Pialligo, where 4 of their meagre 113 residents were busted. Of the suburbs with decent sized population, Gilmore had by far the highest rate of drink-driving.

Perhaps most important is this conclusion (referring to residence of offenders):

There is some variation between suburbs, but remarkable uniformity across the Canberra regions of Gungahlin, Belconnen, North and South Canberra, Woden, Weston, Tuggeranong and Gordon.

(Why has the report’s author elevated Gordon to region status? I have no idea…)

54-11 11:37 am 17 Jul 09

fnaah, I guess the problem was not what Aitken said, but how it was reported.

Several years ago I had the “pleasure” of an interview with a CT reporter, which took about 30 minutes. Just a few sentences were reported, which completely missed the points I was making and gave almost an opposite view of what I was saying.

I will never talk to a reporter again.

fnaah 11:22 am 17 Jul 09

Brilliant bit of thinking this is, one paragraph directly contradicts its predecessor:

“The figures show nearly one in seven Civic residents appeared on drink-driving charges.

Professor Aitken said the statistics revealed recidivism was a large problem in drink-driving.”

Ozi 11:04 am 17 Jul 09

You guys are terrible! The Canberra Times would never display poor journalism. Silly talk.

braddonboy 11:02 am 17 Jul 09

The same article has also promoted John Hargreaves to Chief Minister. Do they know something we dont?

54-11 10:54 am 17 Jul 09

It’s just another example of a reporter (who should know better) taking raw statistics and fail to do any sort of analysis.

The point made by the OP is a valid one – the first bit of analysis should have been to do a comparison based on overall suburb population. The next would be to look at longer term trends, and their critique based on that.

As Wraith says, CT at its best.

Wraith 10:42 am 17 Jul 09

Canberra Times reporting at its best again…………….

djk 10:38 am 17 Jul 09

Postalgeek said :

Not so sure about comparing Braddon and Civic with Kambah, given that many people who drink in Civic and Braddon don’t actually live there and are caught en route to their home turf.

Not that it is what the report is based on anyway, but a lot of other Tuggeranong drink drivers would be caught in Kambah as well, as they usually have the booze bus on the parkway.

martyo 10:25 am 17 Jul 09

2902 SPEW! that’s my new tattoo 🙂

chewy14 10:09 am 17 Jul 09

The report was on residents.
So the Civic figures were for residents of Civic, not people caught there.

Postalgeek 10:04 am 17 Jul 09

Not so sure about comparing Braddon and Civic with Kambah, given that many people who drink in Civic and Braddon don’t actually live there and are caught en route to their home turf.

Related Articles

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Copyright © 2017 Riot ACT Holdings Pty Ltd. All rights reserved. | |

Search across the site