Earlier today, in Queensland, Police Commissioner Ian Stewart announced at a press conference that close to 4,000 approved speed camera locations will be revealed. The catch? We won’t know when they are in use.
When the list will be revealed is on July 1st, 2013. The Police Commissioner said “We hope by doing that, that people will look those sites up and will take notice of them.”
As explained, the sites won’t be updated for when they are active. So the only time you’ll know when there is a camera there is when you see one or get caught by a covert camera setup. The Police Commissioner went on to say:
“We know from evidence, from research that has been done, that having that covert capability really does assist in lowering speed across the state”.
“Our job is to reduce road trauma.
“Nineteen of our deaths on the roads this year have been directly attributable to speeding. We need as a community to do something about that.”
Now this is where it gets interesting
The Police Commissioner then discussed that there is a level of tolerance which is provided by the manufacturer, for the reading and displaying of speed. At the moment Queensland Police have been above those tolerance levels and the current tolerance levels are “fairly liberal tolerances”.
So in addition to the revealing of the approved speeding locations will be the removal of the current speeding tolerance which is 3km/h over the limit. So for example, you won’t be fined for speeding until you’re doing 63km/h in a 60km/h zone.
How this removal will be executed will be by the gradual reduction of the tolerance over time, and we – the public – won’t know what the tolerances will be during this time. Which concerns us a little bit. We understand that a number of drivers are driving to the ‘unofficial’ speed limits but for the general public, knowing what our rights and laws are is imperative. How can we follow the law, if we aren’t made aware of what it is?
Two steps forwards, one step back
So both of these changes seem to contradict each other. On one hand the Police Commissioner announced that the approved speed camera locations will be published online, so road users can familiarise themselves with where speed cameras are most likely to be located. Which, you would think, would allow drivers to know where they can speed and where they’ll have to avoid. Then on the other hand, the tolerance will be reduced to something we won’t know, and allowing no allowance for our cars which whilst might be accurate when new. Can read an incorrect speed as our tires wear, or as the car gets older.
Then let’s not even get into the debate that it has been shown that higher speed limits save lives, as opposed to lower speed limits, and the fact that we need better education for our young drivers as opposed to more restrictions, drunk drivers and drivers under the influence of drugs need to be taken off the road and our cars need to be better maintained. That’s for another blog post and be reassured that we’ll be following this topic up.
So, let us know what you think on these changes. Do you agree? If not, what would you propose?