10 October 2007

Proof speed cameras work!

| lemaChet
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So, in Todays CT, there is an article entitled “204 reasons for speed cameras”
(I apologise for the dodgy image, and the lack of link, and the paraphrasing.. I only glanced quickly through the article.)

Anyway, so, a stolen car was snapped at the new speed cameras on the parkway, doing 204Km/h.
This, apparently, proves that speed cameras work, and that we need more.

Personally, I feel that it proves they don’t, as if you want to speed, you’re going to any way, as the driver of this (albeit stolen) car has demonstrated.

Thoughts ?

Bad Photo of Article

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swamiOFswank6:29 pm 11 Oct 07

A couple of young car-theiving miscreants who are frequent-flyers at Quamby that I know have bragged about stealing cars, joyriding at high speed through camera zones and then quietly returning the car to where it was parked before – with the express purpose of racking up fines for some poor bastard who’ll have no hope of proving it wasn’t him.

You’ve been warned!

I challenge people to try a little experiment next time you are driving around and see either a speed camera, or more particularly a mobile camera van.

whats the first thing you do? (i look at my speedo). what are you not doing while looking at your speedo (not watching the road)

ergo, speed cameras are actually a road saftey hazzard.

I know it doesn’t really add to the debate, but does anyone know what model car it was? Can’t really tell from the pic on this site.

It’s just that I have driven near 200 Km on a track and it’s pretty damn scary. Doing over it on the parkway in a pretty crappy car (from what it looks like) is crazy and stupid. But then again people who steal cars aren’t the brightest are they?

hingo_VRCalaisV610:28 am 11 Oct 07


The only place speed cameras have an effect on speeding are the areas which have them. People will speed up again after the zone. Therefore it would make more sense to have them in school zones. Its not rocket surgery, but I’m sure you’ll have another nice comeback which involves calling me a “dickhead” or “selfish”. I’m just stating the facts. I’m not blind, I do a lot of driving and witness these driving habits every day. Don’t take it to heart.

People only slow down when they see a camera, then they speed up again.

therefore it makes sense to place them outside schools

Actually, that reminds me of an interesting experiment that US cops did. They blew up lifesize photos of a cop and a bike and placed them on highways. Apparently it worked wonders for speed control.

And punters didn’t know which was a real cop and which was a cardboard cut out.

Woody Mann-Caruso8:46 am 11 Oct 07

And, by the way, why does putting speed cameras is school zones make sense if, as you keep on saying, they don’t have any effect on speeding?

Woody Mann-Caruso8:45 am 11 Oct 07

Soon they’ll be cheap enough to stick ’em on every major and arterial road, like CCTV coverage in the UK. In 20 years, with next-gen OnStar-like technology, your car will gently pull over at the next available place on the side of the road, deduct the fine from your account, cancel your license and then switch itself off. I can’t wait.

I think I already said something along those lines VY.

And yeah, it makes heaps of sense.

VYBerlinaV8...the_original_and_best8:30 am 11 Oct 07

If we really feel the need to put speed cameras somewhere, put them in school zones. Kids are much more likely to run onto to road in front of school than to charge out onto the parkway.


I was talking about your suburban back streets, you know, the ones where kids play cricket on the road, dogs run around, tennis balls bounce across with kids chasing after them?

I’d happily see those streets dropped to 40 klicks and cameras set up there.

But some of the places the cameras are in defy logic.

For the first time in ages, I travelled on the Barton Highway from Northbourne Ave to the Cemetary exit. As I approached the speed camera signs, it dawned on me that I had not seen a sign advising me of the limit on this road, unless it was back near Northbourne.
Can any regular user confirm this? Not too flash to set up cameras without advising the limit.

It would almost be worth it! Going and stealing a car and then taking it for a spin at 200km/hr past a few speed cameras. I’ll get the picture of my achievements in the paper something to stick to the fridge to brag about, yet they wouldn’t be able to tell it was me. Why? speed cameras don’t have wheels and red and blue flashing lights to follow me and pull me over, I could even do it numerous times! But they would still have a lovely picture of the back of the car, but if/when the real police do catch up with the driver, he most likely won’t be charged.. they can’t prove he was the driver going past that camera now can they?

Whilst these people are having fun in stolen cars, the rest of us continue on our merry way slowing down for 200m to smile for the camera then back up to speed, of course occasionally smiling and waving for the people who go flying past in those 200m.

Does that prove the cameras work now?
hmm right.. not really hey..

Felix the Cat8:44 pm 10 Oct 07

How do you explain the split two lane Barton Highway where it is easily safe enough to do 100kmh but they have reduced it to 80Kmh and thrown in a speed camera. The road is wide and dead straight! If there was ever a camera set up to bring in money, its that one.

Which part of the Barton Hwy are you talking about? The first part from Northbourne Ave heading towards Hall has traffic from Ellenbourough St entering the highway and then further up has traffic entering from GDE.

Coming the other way from Hall towards Northbourne Ave you have traffic entering/crossing the highway from Kuringa Drive (there was a bad truck accident there a couple of months ago) and more traffic entering/crossing the highway from Curran Dr,Gold Creek Rd and occasionally Bellenden St. Randwick Rd is controlled by traffic lights so it doesn’t count as a danger zone and William Slim Dr/Gundaroo Dr has a roundabout that controls traffic (even though there are regular accidents there I believe they are caused by driver error not speed).

I’m not agreeing with speed cameras (see my previous posts!), just giving reasons why parts of the Barton Highway is an 80km/h zone.

Years ago before the William Slim roundabout and before Gungahlin was built the Barton Highway (“Mad Mile” was the unofficial name of it!) used to be a virtual race track with hoons taking their hotted up cars for high speed runs down there trying to wind their speedo off the clock. As Canberra became more populated and Gungahlin was in it’s early stages this type of behaviour was deemed to be very dangerous to the increased number of other road users. Lower speed limits and then later, speed cameras were seen to be the fix.

V twin venom12:59 pm 10 Oct 07

Who would like to wager that the owner of the car recieves an infringement notice?



Snahons_scv6_berlina12:38 pm 10 Oct 07

absolutely and whats more amusing is the mindless masses that believe what a politician tells them.

Ah, indeed.

However, we keep hearing from politicians that they are for road safety.

Which is crap.

Snahons_scv6_berlina12:19 pm 10 Oct 07

Speed cameras do work. They are designed to take photo’s of moving cars which they do.

Extrapolating that to notions of “improved road safety” or “saves lives” is a little far fetched.

The concept of improved road safety implies safer roads but a stretch of road is only as safe as the drivers driving on it and safety devices within the vehicle (ie ABS,EBD,etc).

Road safety cannot be attributed to ensuring people drive within the ‘maximum’ legal speed as different conditions should dictate appropriate driving speeds. This is where speed cameras fail as a road safety device. They cannot distinguish poor driver behaviour vs good driver behaviour.

The only conclusion one make about speed cameras is as their name implies. They take photos to penalise drivers who exceed the maximum speed permitted. They are not called “Safety Cameras”.

Where do you get the expanding foam that can be sprayed inside these boxes? Top Gear had a good idea

PS: to Mike Crowther

For a moment there I thought you were the Sapphic Erotica bot.

The modern weapon system is a good idea, although I’d suggest the use of an EM pulse to fry the computer chip that controls the engine. Immediate deceleration as the engine cuts out, and is unable to re-start.

Poor culprit is left with an immobile vehicle, and in the case of theft, the victim is left with a pretty much intact vehicle instead of a burnt out hulk.

The natural problem to this situation is that the government is unwilling to address this issue while the other hand is raking in such a lucrative elective tax.

The government sees this as a symbiotic relationship – it gets to tut-tut the road carnage, and apply a placebo dressing. At the same time, the placebo dressing is doing something entirely different, in this case, raking in the cash.

Mike Crowther11:32 am 10 Oct 07

Oops. wrong post. (sorry)

Mike Crowther11:32 am 10 Oct 07

Pull up a bit Carzee. This is an event ostensively for kids. For gods sake they’ve got to have somewhere to cut loose or we’ll end up with a totally neurotic generation. We cotton-wool school age ones enough now day’s, at least let the teenagers scream and slam each other. Believe it or not they’re learning to socialise as well as having fun. You can’t condemn something just because its outside your cultural paradigm. I’m over 50 and though I still enjoy the odd Metal moment, joining in a mosh pit is simply not on my menu. (But then they aren’t designed for us are they?)

Deano, your competition is a lay down misere.

The next would be for the boys to steal 2 very similar cars, take the number plate from the front of one & screw it to the back of the other. Then go and blat through 2 separate cameras at about the same time. Should cause a bit of confusion.

Well Josh,

you just contributed…

hingo_VRCalaisV611:02 am 10 Oct 07

Being that speed camera’s take an image of the car speeding. Wouldn’t the owners of the stolen car receive the fine, not the person who stole it, or are these some kind of fantastical cameras that can detect theives? Balaclava detecting camera perhaps?

yay riotact! more of the same! another twenty ‘speed cameras don’t stop speeding!!’ comments


Woody Mann-Caruso10:45 am 10 Oct 07

And a patrolling cop couldn’t have done the same job?

Sure – an expensive cop, in an expensive car, who happened to be there, and who happened to have a camera ready.

You all whinge about speed cameras, and propose more police as a solution – police who can only do exactly the same job as a speed camera (ie provide evidence leading to a charge and a conviction), only less efficiently and effectively and at a vastly inflated cost. Could you even try to think these things through before you put your brains back into neutral and start typing?

why is it necessary for that road to be marked 80km/h?

It wouldn’t matter what it was – you’d think you were special and thus entitled to do 10-20km/h over that limit. Everybody in Queensland insists they’d never speed if only their 70 zones were raised to 80 and 100 zones raised to 110. well, that’s what we have here and in NSW, and it makes no difference whatsoever. You speed because you’re a selfish dickhead, not to protest the limit on a particular stretch of road.

it’s more dangerous to do 60 on small suburban street

You’re absolutely right. Maybe we should put speed vans on those streets? Oh wait – we already do. Of course, they’re just “revenue raising” as well, aren’t they?

My favourite quote from the article was Hargreaves saying that when (if!) this person is caught, not only will they be charged with stealing a car, they will also be booked for speeding and probably lose their licence. That’ll teach them – assuming they had a licence in the first place.

There is also a small technicality of proving who was actually driving the car at the time. Might be a good opportunity of a game of Prisoner’s Dilemma!

What’s the bet he has just started a new competition for car thieves – steal a car, see how fast you can speed past a camera and get your photo in the paper to brag about with your mates!

hingo_VRCalaisV610:34 am 10 Oct 07

So the cameras stop speeding for a whole 100 metres. Is that really going to make much of a difference to driver safety?

From my personal experience, I am more likely to drive slower if I know there is a good chance of police presense on the road. Speed cameras are predictable and pointless. Only dumbasses get caught by them and only if they are the only car in the shot.

The speed camera vans make more sense to me because they are harder to predict. What is the point of fixed camera’s unless they are red light cameras?

Ignoring the fact that it’s a stolen car, I think the title should have been ” 104 reasons for speed camera’s “, because you’re actually allowed to do 100kph there …
But aside from that I don’t think they are a real deterrent for anything, and actually piss more people off when other’s see one, panic, jam on their brakes to ensure they are “safely” doing 20kph less than the marked speed limit.

ermm how do they not stop speeding?? Let’s say I’m speeding, and I see a camera, then I’m obviously going to slow down (or ‘stop speeding’) aren’t I?? .. Even if I speed back up after the camera, it’s slowed me down for at least a little while… I mean yes, they are revenue raisers, but they are also a deterrent to speeding.. I know I slow down for a bit when I see one

hingo_VRCalaisV610:17 am 10 Oct 07

LOL you have some fine ideas there Sammy.

I prefer the use of IEDs…

An even better idea:

Modern weapons systems are able to identify a moving target and hit it with incredible accuracy.

Ok, you think i’m headed somewhere dastardly with this statement. Let’s put that thought aside, and contemplate another.

You fire a small adhesive marker at the offending vehicle, containing a GPS tracking device. The police are notified of this, and can track the (potentially stolen) vehicle and apprehend the offenders.

James-T-Kirk10:06 am 10 Oct 07

15 Years since ly last ticket – and I still drive above the limit.

These cameras just don’t work.

In the early days of the fixed speed cameras they used film to record the speeding incident, and the film was removed and replaced on a regular basis.

I assume that they are now using digital technology. If this is the case, then why not have the speed camera system automatically send certain digital snaps of vehicles to the police.

Photos of vehicles doing more than say 50% over the limit (ie. 90 in a 60, or 150 in a 100 zone) are sent straight to police, and they can then attempt to get these types of drivers off the road. You could track the general direction they are heading by following the trail of speed camera photos.

If the system was well designed, these photos could be at the police coordination centre within seconds. It could also be a method of tracking stolen vehicles.

As this newspaper article demonstrates, when the cameras catch excessive speeding, it’s often being perpetrated in a stolen vehicle.

James-T-Kirk10:05 am 10 Oct 07

15 years since my last ticket (What can I say – I was tired).. I have not slowed down one bit – I have simply become more observant..

These stupid cameras simply don’t work….

Exactly V8.

VYBerlinaV8...the_original_and_best9:52 am 10 Oct 07

I’d prefer to see marked police patrols, because they are able to:
1) Identify road rules compliance failures other than just speed related; and
2) Take action immediately.

So you need to not only ensure that you do the speed limit, but also ensure that your vehicle only does the speed limit when stolen.

Leave instructions for the thief to adhere to, see how lucky you get.

There are some ‘tards out there.

hingo_VRCalaisV69:47 am 10 Oct 07

And a patrolling cop couldn’t have done the same job?

How do you explain the split two lane Barton Highway where it is easily safe enough to do 100kmh but they have reduced it to 80Kmh and thrown in a speed camera. The road is wide and dead straight! If there was ever a camera set up to bring in money, its that one.

Sure, don’t speed and you won’t get caught, but why is it necessary for that road to be marked 80km/h?

lol…How is the speed camera effective on a stolen car unless they actually catch the culprit?

Whoops, 90 in an 80 k zone…


The fact that they’re not 0% effective doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re 100% effective.

Works both ways caf…

If they put cameras outside schools i’d say they were warranted. Seriously, it’s more dangerous to do 60 on small suburban street than it is to do 90 in a 100k zone.

VYBerlinaV8...the_original_and_best9:45 am 10 Oct 07

I agree with most here, in that speed cameras are an easy way for the govt to claim they are actually doing something about road safety, when they are doing nothing. I also think we need to break free from this silly idea that a speed limit somehow differentiates ‘dangerous’ from ‘safe’, which in many people’s mind is what a speed limit means. I’m all for road rules compliance, but let’s think about doing it in a way that makes our road system safer and more effective.

The fact that they’re not 100% effective doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re 0% effective.

> If you dont speed, i guess they should be of no concern to you.

I dont’ speed, and in that sense they are of no concern to me. What is of concern is that are claimed to be improving public safety, when in fact…they do not.

Stung, that is not the discussion. The discussion is about the government calling speed cameras safety devices and traffic control devices.

This they are not.

Speed cameras do work because they film cars speeding. However, we are constantly told that they stop speeding.

So there’s 204 reasons why they don’t work.

If you dont speed, i guess they should be of no concern to you.

As I have previously said, they DO NOT stop speeding, they simply catch those who are speeding.

The proof is in the fact that they continue to catch people speeding, therefore they don’t work.

Revenue raising.

Having said that, I really don’t care because I don’t speed and if you do get zapped by a camera then it’s your fault.

(Admittedly, there are sections of road where you have no idea what the speed limit is because it changes so often even though the road and conditions don’t)

I’m glad you posted this, I was thinking along the same lines. To me, it proves they are less than useful. This driver (in a stolen car) continued speeding dangerously on our streets & roads unstopped. They haven’t caught the thief/driver.

Perhaps all the money spent on cameras could have hired an extra cop or two & perhaps then this idiot would have actually been caught & taken off the road…you know, in the interests of public safety.

I really can’t believe the tried to pass this off as “proof” of the value of speed cameras. What a joke.

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