16 August 2007

New Revenue Speed Cameras Active

| Jazz
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John Hargreaves has put out this media release on the activation of 4 new permanent speed cameras around Canberra.

New locations are Canberra Avenue/Captain Cook Crescent/Manuka Circle; Gungahlin Drive/Gundaroo Drive, Tuggeranong Parkway, near the Cotter Road Overpass; and Federal Highway, southbound, approaching the Antill Street roundabout.

With these ones yet to come.

Federal Highway, northbound, approaching the Antill Street roundabout
Tuggeranong Parkway, both directions, near the Hindmarsh Drive underpass
Barton Highway, both directions, between Curran Drive and Gold Creek Road
Barton Highway, both directions, between Gungahlin Drive and Ellenborough Street
Monaro Highway, both directions, near the Hindmarsh Drive overpass
Monaro Highway, northbound, between Lanyon Drive and Sheppard Street
Monaro Highway, southbound, between Mugga Lane and Isabella Drive

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Woody Mann-Caruso4:45 pm 16 May 08

I suspect it’s a f.ck you. When I lived in Queensland, where streets that are 80km/h streets in Canberra are 60km/h (or sometimes – gasp – 70 km/h) and the highways 100km/h, everybody said that if the limits were just 10km/h higher they’d never speed. Well, Canberra has all that – 80km/h between town centres, 60km/h on suburban arterials, and 110km/h all the way to Sydney. Everybody still does 10km/h over the limit.

Yeah, I could – and do – glance at my speedo* but few cars’ speedos read 100% accurately. An argument usually espoused under these circumstances is to drive say 10km/h under the speed limit. Trouble is, that sort of driving style will either get you mercilessly carved up on the mean streets of Canberra (actually, anywhere in Oz) or will either earn you a liberace from the driver behind if you suddenly slow approaching a speed camera. (*- when I say “glance” in reality it seems more like “check speed constantly from the first warning signpost/glimpse of the van until you are past the camera with the occasional glimpse at the road”. How crazy is that for road safety purposes???)

On a sidepoint, as others have observed, it seems when people pass a speed camera they resume their “normal” speed. Is that because they feel the extra 5-10km/h (and generally speaking that’s all it ever is, never 30km/h plus) is the actual appropriate and safe speed for the conditions, or is it a subconcious “f#!k you!” to authority?

Woody Mann-Caruso3:08 pm 16 May 08

Can’t you just glance at your speedo? If it’s over the speed limit, you’ve done the wrong thing. If you didn’t see the large white van with the huge sign on top or the endless signs leading up to the fixed camera, you probably wouldn’t notice a flashing sign either.

What gets me the most about speed cameras – fixed or in a van – is that you don’t know that you have done the wrong (or right) thing unless you get a love letter from the ACT/State Govt two weeks later. So if speeding is bad (mmmkay) shouldn’t an infringement be instantly notified to the driver – ie have a display that flashes up “left lane speeding 92kmh, illegal” or “right lane keep driving safely” – as well as sending out the revenue request?

PS Driving for 23 years, last fine 18 years ago, been speeding since then…

Kramer, didn’t say I owned one, just that it was a solution. Riding the Bigred machine down the Parkway, just need to remeber the Cotter slowdown and all is well. After all, they only want you to do 100km/h or less at that point. Don’t they? Otherwise they would link the soon to be 2 cameras and charge you on the average speed over the distance like they do in Victoria.

“the parkway cameras are at the cotter road overpass, not hindmarsh…”

Bartron – There are currently cameras operating on the Tugger Parkway at Cotter road, and there will soon be new cameras at the Hindmarsh overpass. Plus the red light & speed camera at Kambah, it could lead to some expensive commutes for Tuggers/Belco travellers.

Bigred – you are supposed to purchase and mount an additional number plate for your bike rack if it obscures the standard plate fitted to your vehicle. That said, I purchased a bike rack plate, but it’s too damn big, so I can’t get my bike onto the rack with it fitted – so I drive around with my plate obscured too.

Just by earlier model Forester GT, fit a towbar with bike rack fittings and no speed or red light camera will ever catch your rear plate number. If you wanna be a real “wayne kerr” drive around with annoying fog/spot/driving/auxillary/whatever lights on as well.

Woody Mann-Caruso12:05 pm 16 May 08

they have zero impact on safety.

That’s just not true. Do you want me to start posting links to the hundreds of national and international evaluations showing that speed cameras have a significant and measurable effect on public safety, or can you use Google and find them for yourself?

Here’s one from the UK to get you started:

“Evaluation of the safet camera partnerships over the four year period from April 2000 to March 2004 identified their success in reducing speeding and the resultant casualties…vehicle speeds reduced by 70% at new fixed camera points and 18% at new mobile sites. Reductions in the proportion of vehicles breaking the speed limit by 15 miles ber hour or more were even greater. Both casualties and deaths were down…there was a 22% reduction in personal injury collisions at sites after cameras were introduced. Overall 42% fewer people were kiled or seriously injured. After allowing for both regression-to-mean and long-term trends in collision frequencies, the average effect of a sample of 216 cameras was a reduction of 19% in both personal injury collisions and serious and fatal collisions.”

– Road Policing and Technology, House of Commons Papers 975

No seriously,

I believe the number of road deaths in Canberra actually increased in the last year, even though we now have more speed cameras than ever.

The speed camera near my place is strategically placed at the bottom of rather downward sloping street which I’m sure has never been an accident hotspot, but is now subject to the pedal-power mafia introduced 50km law. I’ve actually tried it a couple of times, and if you roll without any use of the accelerator pedal, you hit about 65km/h. Please somebody tell me this is not revenue raising. I know I’ve contributed to the ACT Government bank balance a couple of times on this very spot whilst actually believing I was driving with care.

But truly we are sheep. We accept whatever is thrown at us and do nothing more than complain on re-vamped blogsites. Maybe someone with a bit more balls than can be found here should bomb the f***ers!

Hey.. I’m sure I’ve had a fine from a camera whilst in my Monaro…

VYBerlinaV8_the_one_they_all_copy11:40 am 16 May 08

Speed cameras are pure revenue machines – they have zero impact on safety. In many respects, forcing drivers to travel at speeds they consider unreasonably low causes more problems due to frustration and lack of concentration. Jemmy’s point about speed limits ideally being set set at 85% of unconstrained speed is well made.

So the question becomes – in good weather what speed would you choose to travel at along the Monaro Highway? For me (unconstrained) it would be perhaps 115km/h on the section with intersections and 140km/h on the sections without? That gives us about 95km/h and 115km/h respectively. Why not set the limit (and, if we must have them, cameras, at that level)?

I’m no fan of speed cameras but I would be interested to see what the ACT Government does with the revenue. Is it put into consolidated revenue of to they use the money to improve the quality of roads, driver education etc – thus making the roads safer?

I would like to see the revenue put into more police – If I had a better understanding of what the money is being used for then I may not have as big an issue with the cameras.

No doubt the money is being pi$$ed up against the wall on something like a $100 million jail, sorry I should say resort – Have you seen the conditions those prisoners will be living in!! What a joke.

madman said :

you know what. I actually sped through the camera heading north on the monaro a month back and never got a ticket……..

Wow! What a mad man….

you know what. I actually sped through the camera heading north on the monaro a month back and never got a ticket……..

The difference between the NSW fixed speed cameras and the ACT ones are that in NSW they put them in accident black spots – like the pacific hwy before Coffs. In the ACT we have them on the straightest, safest sections.

And the new camera warning signs are so huge I don’t even think it could be revenue raising. You would have to be blind, or blind drunk, to get done. What’s the point of them?? What a waste of money!! I’d like to see how many people have been stupid enough to be caught.

Also, have you noticed that they’ve moved the water usage sign that was suspiciously placed in front of the speed camera sign heading south on the tugg pkwy.

I don’t think the Monaro cameras are operational yet; or maybe they are just for show. Has anybody actually had a fine from a Monaro camera??

Whinge whinge about speed cameras again.

Voluntarily speed and voluntarily pay the speeding tax. It’s exactly the same with parking in Civic. Some people choose to run the gauntlet and not pay as by the time they get a ticket it’s cheaper than paying for parking every day.

More Police booking people is revenue raising, more speed vans is revenue raising, more cameras revenue raising. It’s what governments do get over it.

Caf I drove on that road last week. And honestly there are two speed cameras now positioned on overtaking double lane sections. They may be new Im not sure because I havnt driven on that road for ages. I didnt say all of them for god sake.

Note I said ”some” of them unbelievably positioned on the few double lane overtaking lanes.

So whats bollocks about that.

Bollocks, I’ve driven that road several times in the last few years and while it is in terrible condition, at least half of those speed cameras are located in towns (all those houses should be a clue that the speed limit has dropped from 100!).

I just drove from Sydney to Gold Coast and the Pacific highway is an absolute nightmare and a disgrace that its still in this state in 2008. A couple hundred kms generally south of Coffs Harbour. This is what we have; single lane most of the way. 10 fixed speed cameras some of them unbelievably positioned on the few double lane overtaking lanes. So when you pull out into the fast lane to overtake after miles of single lane you run straight into a speed camera. Not only that but you have to keep an eye constantly on the speed signs and speedo as the posted limited varies from 110 to 100 to 80 70 60 50 40. And this is our national no 1 highway.

Who ever was the lunatic that positioned these cameras on the overtaking lanes could only have done so for revenue raising purposes.

PK: I believe the camera on the Barton Highway gets periodically turned around to face the other side of the road.

Holden Caulfield2:44 pm 15 May 08

I have no definitive answer in regards to Canberra, except to pass on some anecdotal evidence from an ex-work colleague who I used to work with back in Melbourne. She used to date a copper and apparently all of Melbourne at the time (mid 90s) only had a handful of red light cameras, even though they were seemingly installed all over the city. As you suggest, most were dummy units only and the actual working cameras were sporadically moved around the city so as to keep motorists on their toes.

Just out of interest, has anyone actually been booked by one of the fixed speed cameras that have been installed on the Monaro Highway (either at Hume or near Isabella Drive)? The reason I ask this is that at other speed camera sites, as you go past the camera itself you can actually see the sensors that have been installed in the road itself which are the things that detect what speed you are actually doing. Neither of the ones I see on the Monaro Highway have these sensors, so I am thinking that theu are either ones that use a different method to detect speed (eg radar), or…. are they dummy units just designed to make people slow down???

Secondly, I saw on the Barton Highway just near the GDE overpass that there is a camera in both directions. BUT… have a close look at these cameras. In the direction where you are going away from Canberra, there is a flash unit and a camera unit as expected. However, on the side of the road coming into Canberra, there is a flash unit only, but no camera unit – it is actually facing the other way to get people leaving Canberra. And, do these have sensors in the road? How can the unit take a photo of you as you approach Canberra if the camera is facing the other way?

The ones on the Parkway definitely have the sensors because you can see then, but at the other sites I mention, definitely not!

Just interested…

Straight Shooter11:43 pm 24 Aug 07

Ok here’s the deal. I have never been busted speeding and frankly the new cameras don’t faze me in the slightest. However, as most of you know by now, there are two new speed on the Monaro Hwy tucked away behind sign posts eager to trap unsuspecting drivers. How devious ! These so called “safety” cameras are put in spots identified by the Labour Government as problem areas. So tell me why I rarely see speed vans or police patroling these areas during peak hour traffic? I have driven on the Monaro Hwy 6 days out of 7 for the past 6 years and I only ever see added police presence during the snow season when busting interstate visitors is easy. Please don’t tell me that these cameras are not revenue based ! In essence I am sick and tired of our own Government telling us blatent lies…thats what really annoys me. Tell me the cameras are for revenue and I could deal with it but don’t give me this cock and bull story about them “saving lives”. Saving your budget more like it. Here’s an idea…spray paint the new camera poles fluro pink…just for safety reasons of course.

jemmy re Victoria,

I completely agree about their unrealistic speed tolerances, so much so that i avoid driving there at all costs,and i have family there. We just catch public transport around Melbourne when there.

We also have black listed Victoria for any family driving holidays as a destination as a direct result of their driving tax. Its market forces i guess, Victoria – too bloody expensive to move in!

Those in favour of cameras or who say it’s a voluntary tax are assuming that the government will continue to set realistic speed limits. However, the pressure to use it as a revenue device will prove irresistible.

Simply by reducing limits by 10kmh they will ping just enough drivers to get $120 a time, yet not enough drivers so that the whole community becomes outraged.

You have no experience of governments that act unethically. The Victorian govt has lowered limits and set unrealistic limits to the extent that so many people have tickets that insurance companies no longer question Victorian drivers about their speeding tickets when renewing.

Most people do have a self-preservation instinct and drive to suit conditions. The speed limit that causes the fewest accidents is at the 85% level in the fourth quartile of the ‘natural’ speed, i.e. the speed done by unconstrained drivers. The Victorian government intentionally sets their limits less than that, thereby causing more accidents.

The Victorian government now gets over $500m a year; it is so much that it is a permanent budget allocation. If they were honest about it, it would not be recurrent revenue because surely the aim is to reduce it to zero, i.e. no drivers speeding.

Perhaps. But we will never know since you simply cannot actively avoid unforeseen, random events.

Unforeseen? Random? Hey, there’s an argument for the effectiveness of mobile cameras!

That’s fine, Mash, but your taxes have been used to buy these things and what do you get back? Has road safety improved? Marginally, maybe, if you squint really hard at the figures!

The government just aren’t being honest about it. If they just came out and said “these things cost a lot of tax payers money, make us millions of bucks in unallocated funds and do little to improve road safety” then I’d shut up. Instead they continue to lye outright to us on a daily basis.

caf said: “…you’ll find it easier to avoid an accident if you’re going 100km/h rather than 120km/h.”
That’s a flawed argument. It’s equally likely that you’ll actually put yourself in harms way by doing 100 instead of 120. Besides, no speed camera is ever going to solve that problem.

I advocate driver training and stricter conditions on granting licences, but that costs money and reduces revenue so that’s never going to happen.

I still can’t fathom what everyone is whinging about! If you exceed the speed limit and get caught – it’s your own fault. It’s not the fault of the Government or Police, or even the hoon tail-gating your bumper bar.

Quite simply, speeding fines are voluntary taxes.

For those wanting to see more Police on the street, look squarely at the ACT Government who have provided inadequate resources for the plod for way too long.

That’s just my two (or maybe three) cents worth.

How do you multiply and maximize the impact of a speed camera? Put lots of big signs up in the kilometre of road before the camera, thereby creating motivation to reduce speed sooner, and stay at correct speed longer. Outcome: Increase in road safety. Problem: fewer people caught speeding, less revenue. Chances of it occurring, zero.

Will these cameras suffer the Gatso treatment?


Woody Mann-Caruso9:49 pm 17 Aug 07

Exactly WMC, Those cameras on the parkway are actually dangerous if anything.

That’s the exact opposite of what I said. What’s dangerous is hoons tearing along at 130 under the bridge and then cleaning up somebody coming down the entry ramp. Watched a P-plater do it last weekend – tore up behind me, jerked into the right hand lane flooring it past me, jumped back in front of me into the left hand lane, then had to slam on his brakes (I’m talking lock up here) and swerve back into the right lane to avoid cleaning up a station wagon that’d just entered the left lane from the ramp. They use the downhill slope to pick up speed – perfect place for a camera, I reckon. Ditto with the one at Chisholm roundabout – gettng tired of being sideswiped by wankers screaming down the lefthand lane, then cutting across two lanes to get into the roundabout turnoff at the last second.

(that’s the sound of the point sailing over your head as you missed it completely)

“For example, if someone else on the road loses concentration and changes lane into you”

And how exactly can a speed camera ping such dumbass drivers?

Oh and in the interests of full disclosure, I myself got pinged for speeding last weekend. I’m yet to arc up about it though.

It’s interesting that the anti-camera lobby don’t seem to address the point that even if a particular accident isn’t primarily caused by speeding, the fact the one or both parties are speeding can well have reduced the avoidability of an accident, and/or made the results of the accident more severe. For example, if someone else on the road loses concentration and changes lane into you, you’ll find it easier to avoid an accident if you’re going 100km/h rather than 120km/h.

Taking the use of speed camera’s for revenue raising and not crash reduct as a given, is there any practical reason why the government couldn’t assign revenues from camera’s to a certain area, like as AG suggested hospitals, or on road works etc.. Practically it would make no difference as the government would then simply decrease allocated funding to the department, but it might make those with fines to pay a little more happy knowing that the money will flow to whatever cause.

VYBerlinaV8 now_with_added grunt2:44 pm 17 Aug 07

If we want to look at stats we need to look at things such as:
1) Where did deaths and major injuries actually occur?
2) Were there any common factors leading to such situations (there aren’t always)?

In my opinion, there are three main causes of serious road accidents:
1) People who lose concentration, or lack the skills to control their car in an exceptional situation.
2) Mechanical failure.
3) People jerking around going for a ‘top speed run’, showing off to their mates, etc.

I’m not sure how speed cameras address ANY of these things. Personally, I’d be much happier with a greater marked police presence on the roads.

Fines don’t stop bad drivers either, aussielyn.

“Stanhopeless’s press release… claimed that 15% of people speed on the Parkway.

Can we see these stats?”
Who cares about THOSE stats, how about looking at stats that are actually relevant?! Just because that’s true doesn’t mean it’s causing an increase in accidents.

VYBerlinaV8 now_with_added grunt10:19 am 17 Aug 07

Revenue cameras do very little to make the roads a safer place. I know where the ones near where I live are and slow down around them – hooray. People who think that speeding automatically makes you go from ‘safe’ to ‘in danger’ shouldn’t be allowed to vote, because they clearly have no real mental capabilities.

fhakk – that is entirely correct. Back in May when hopeless Hargreaves announced the sites he proudly stated that their need was backed by sound stats and their selection was proposed by a committee.

Problem is that the committee was disbanded last year and the stats are still nowhere to be seen. NRMA support a highly visible police road patrol – not cheap and ineffective cameras.

Then there was Stanhopeless’s press release a couple of weeks ago – where again claimed that 15% of people speed on the Parkway.

Can we see these stats?

And if they were fair dinkum then all funding from the cameras would go directly into the ED’s of our two hospitals – to help crash victims….

LOL aussielyn. I knew there would be at least one fruitcake who thought this would save lives. The more cameras the better? Who are you? Big Brother?Can’t wait to see the tail-enders on my way to work as soon as these cameras are operational. Red light cameras I can understand, running red lights is dangerous. Doing 90 or 100kph on the Barton Highway can easily be done without putting anyone in danger. The only reason it is 80kph in the first place is so cops can put their evil van in the middle of the road and bring in some easy cash. It turns into a 100kph zone not far after the gungahlin drive overpass and the road is no safer than the 80 zone before it.

Those ‘hoons’ you are worried about will slow down for 2 seconds to avoid getting caught then straight away they will go again.
Exactly! I go down the parkway every morning for work…traffic flows fine at 110km/h and then slows to 95 for a few meters at the camera, and then straight back to 110, with the obligatory wankers doing 130 on a car fillied road trying to cut in and out of the lanes.

I would have much rather seen red light cameras at some of the intersections which see alot of accidents…make money catching people that endanger lives, not those that have unknowingly crept to 110kmh down a hill.

What’s interesting is the NRMA says, despite frequent requests, they have not received any data from the ACT government about why those cameras are needed. Don’t you think it’s interesting that the NRMA, an organisation which is supposed to help improve road safety, is uncomfortable with the whole speed camera thing?

Deano, isn’t it illegal to have a speed camera sign with no warning in the ACT?

Hingo, You are right about following the same speed as the traffic. I do my best to avoid speeding. But sometimes it is necessary to avoid a collision.

And aussielyn, Take my word for it. Those ‘hoons’ you are worried about will slow down for 2 seconds to avoid getting caught then straight away they will go again.

Revenue Cameras are useless. And as much as I have seen lately the police are no better.

the parkway cameras are at the cotter road overpass, not hindmarsh…..

for anyone complaining…don’t speed and you won’t get fined…it’s that simple

The cameras on the Monaro Highway are very conveniently hidden behind large signs with no warning signs in place. Perfectly placed to catch the snow traffic – Thank you for passing through the ACT, that’ll be $77 thanks.

barking toad5:56 pm 16 Aug 07

Well aussielyn, if you feel speed cameras were put in place for road safety reasons then good for you.

There are fairies at the bottom of the garden too!

The more speed cameras the better. People who speed will be punished in the hip pocket nerve. Dangerous driving, no matter what time, should be discouraged and this measure will sort some out. The police cannot be everywhere so better to use technology is to be applauded.
If it stops the hoons dragging down the Monaro Hwy at 2am, maybe we can have some sleep in Narrabundah. Maybe it will save some lives!
Cynics may call it revenue raising, I call it road safety.

I’m not a leadfoot but I like to keep the traffic flowing. If the people in front of me are doing 10k’s over, then fuck it, I’ll follow them. There aren’t any pedestrians on the Barton Hwy anyway, I’m basically driving to the conditions which his the safest form of driving, ask any professional driver. More accidents occur if your constantly worried about doing 1km/h over the speed limit or getting blasted by a camera; because you aren’t really concentrating on the road, your concentrating on not getting taxed.

Besides, if there is more than one car in the photo, you can’t get done anyway because they are unable to tell which car was speeding.

If anyone thinks these carmeras were installed to keep people safe then they have a warped sense of reality. As Thumper said, these will just create more distraction for the driver.

It’s a tax. But it is voluntary. Keep on swelling the ACT govt’s coffers you leadfoot suckers.

After reading the ACT Road Safety Strategy recently it’s clear that these cameras are pure revenue raising. 46% of all crashes in Canberra are nose to tail. 70% of crashes occur between 7am and 10am and 4pm and 7pm. We all know thae average speed in these areas at this time is well below the posted limit…..

What are these cameras supposed to do? (except raise money…) They certainly won’t reduce the number of crashes.

Woody Mann-Caruso3:00 pm 16 Aug 07

I note many of the new locations are dead straight, multi-lane, divided highways or parkways…

Where, as you note two seconds later, there’s merging traffic. Lots of fun coming off an entry ramp and getting t-boned by Joe F*ckwit in his VN Commodore, a gutful of piss and a back seat full of dickheads egging him on.

Don’t worry hingo, speed cameras don’t stop speeding anyway. What we need in Canberra is tail-gate cameras!

I note many of the new locations are dead straight, multi-lane, divided highways or parkways where the chance of a speed related accident is very, very low.

Those cameras on the Tuggers Parkway are likely to cause more congestion at a point where there’s already issues with merging traffic. They’ll certainly lead to confusion, panic braking and inevitably, more rear-enders.

They can still mark it on REVs.

Excellent! As far as my license and rego are concerned, I’m a New South Welshman!

Apparently the ACT Government is owed millions from interstaters running the red light cameras and speeding, and then not paying.

The ACT allegedly has no arrangements with the states to recover the money or dock the points of those drivers.

These speed cameras are a joke. I don’t think I’ve ever seen an accident caused by speeding in any of those areas. At least on the North side.

Maybe we need to do what the poms are doing with theirs http://www.speedcam.co.uk/gatso2.htm

Apparently a tire filled with petrol over the top of the camera is the best method for destruction

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