The ACT Government will add two additional mobile speed cameras to their fleet in the coming months after an independent report into the ACT’s Road Safety program found that mobile speed cameras have saved more than $60 million in road trauma costs each year.
The detailed report by Monash University’s Accident Research Centre analysed 27 fixed speed cameras across the territory, two point-to-point speed cameras on Hindmarsh Drive and Athlon Drive – which have since been decommissioned – as well as 1,139 unique locations of mobile speed cameras.
The report said the ACT’s mobile speed camera program is “arguably the most important element of the ACT traffic camera program”, stating that it had reduced accidents by around 22 per cent between September 2016 and September 2017.
The report said that the mobile speed camera program had also prevented up to 120 casualty crashes that could have resulted in a fatality or injury, 2,900 property damage crashes and more than $60 million in crash costs in the space of those 12 months.
The data also showed that over 80 per cent of crashes in the ACT occurred within 0.5 km of a site used at one or more times for mobile speed camera enforcement.
As a result of the strategic analysis, the ACT Government said it will add two additional mobile speed cameras to the roster in the next few months, which they believe will prevent an additional 11 casualty crashes and over 170 property crashes per year.
ACT Minister for Roads Shane Rattenbury said the overall objective of the mobile camera program is to create the perception of “anywhere, anytime” speed enforcement in the ACT to encourage motorist to obey speed limits.
“I am really pleased with the outcome because they show that speed camera programs are having a real impact on improving road safety in the ACT,” Mr Rattenbury said. “It has highlighted areas where we can continue to make improvements.
“We are not saying that cameras are the only thing to keep roads safe but what this report does show us is that cameras do make a material difference and they are worth having out there.”
Mr Rattenbury hopes the report will show Canberrans there is a value in having mobile speed cameras.
“We see around 30,000 fines a year from the mobile speed vans and that generates around $10 million in revenue last financial year,” he said.
“What I can assure you is that the ACT Government spends far more than that on road safety programs from operating the cameras, to the money we put into having police on the road to enforce road rules and the various upgrades we make to address black spots and other safety hazards.
“I think it is important for the community to see the value in mobile speed cameras. There is cynicism sometimes around cameras and hopefully, people will see they have a significant impact on road safety.”
The evaluation into the speed camera program, which will take place every three years, also found that the fixed speed cameras and point-to-point camera system on Hindmarsh Drive had reduced reported crashes by 25 per cent.
The report said that the cameras on Hindmarsh Drive had prevented 69 reported crashes annually, including 13 by the point-to-point camera system between Yamba Drive and Dalrymple Street.
It is estimated that the speed cameras on the major arterial road in Canberra’s south had saved $1.3 million annually in crash costs to the ACT community, with the point-to-point camera saving $262,000.