Herald Sun 31/07/03
Revealed: Our $2 mil hidden road cameras
By CAMERON SMITH
FIXED speed cameras hidden behind signs and tucked into overpasses are
reaping $2 million a week from speeding Melbourne motorists.
The 14 fixed camera traps across Melbourne, each with a bank of three
cameras, are catching an average of 65,000 motorists a month.
Last year the fixed cameras raised more than $100 million in speeding
Police have refused to reveal how many speed cameras they have, but the
Herald Sun believes there are about 42 at 14 sites.
The State Government is refusing calls to identify each hidden speed
trap to motorists.
The Herald Sun today reveals the location of 12 sites -- seven along the
Western Ring Rd between West Gate Freeway and the Hume Highway exit.
At each location, three cameras cover each lane of one of Melbourne's
The Herald Sun also found the notorious Monash Freeway speed camera
Pictures reveal the cameras hidden behind a sign on a gantry just before
motorists pass over Punt Rd.
Other cameras were found in Caulfield, Rowville, Geelong and Wandong.
Fixed cameras have been used in Melbourne for just three years but their
increasing use has made them the fastest-growing sector of speeding fine
RACV spokesman Ken Ogden said work needed to be done to change the
public's perception that speed cameras are just revenue raisers.
The Opposition has criticised the policy on speed cameras, accusing the
Bracks Government of being more interested in collecting fines than
battling speeding drivers.
Opposition transport spokesman Terry Mulder said the Government had gone
against speed camera protocol to increase funding.
"There is a place for speed cameras but not at the bottom of hills and
not using methods of entrapment," he said.
In April, fixed camera revenue accounted for 80 per cent of the state's
total speeding fines for the month.
Police figures show 67,864 motorists were caught by fixed speed cameras
The number of speeding motorists caught in Victoria by fixed cameras
peaked in November last year when 86,928 drivers were snapped.
The figure dropped to 57,476 in May, the lowest number of drivers caught
in the past 12 months.
Mr Ogden, the RACV'S public policy general manager, said speed camera
revenue should go to road safety initiatives rather than into the
"We are not opposed to speed cameras as long as they are deployed where
speed is a problem," Mr Ogden said.
"We would like to see the funding go to bringing rural highways up to
Transport Accident Commission spokeswoman De-Arnne Schmidt said the TAC
supported police policy on speed cameras.
"Motorists should travel at the speed limit all the time, not just where
there is a speed camera," Ms Schmidt said.
A government spokesman defended the policy of not revealing the
locations of cameras.
"Research shows when exact speed camera locations are known, motorists
slow down at that point and then speed up again after they are out of
the camera's range," said George Svigos.
"We want people to believe that if you speed in Victoria, or drive at an
unsafe level, you will get caught."
Police were forced to issue a statement yesterday after it was revealed
that e-mails had been circulated disclosing speed camera locations
"Police are aware of various lists circulating purporting to be lists of
speed camera sites in Victoria," Superintendent Peter Keogh said.
"Police have viewed some of the lists, which appear to be out of date.
"Victoria Police is solely committed to road safety and reducing road
trauma. Speed cameras have been and will continue to be effective tools
in this strategy.
"Victoria Police do not promote the locations of cameras as we believe
that motorists should travel within the speed limit at all times, not
just in the vicinity of a speed camera site."
Melbourne's hidden road cameras
Click, ka-ching: cameras on the Western Ring Rd outbound, behind signs
at the Boundary Rd exit, Ardeer. Picture: Bill McAuley.
Some of the speed cameras locations
* Ardeer: inbound lane, Western Ring Rd, hidden behind sings at the
Western Hwy exit.
* Ardeer: outbound lane, Western Ring Rd, on top of signs at the
Western Hwy exit.
* Laverton North: outbound lane, Western Ring Rd, hidden hehind sings
at the Boundary Rd exit.
* Laverton North: inbound lane, Western Ring Rd, on top of a sign at
the Boundary Rd exit.
* Wandon: not yet operating. On the Hume Hwy, about 55km from
Melbourne, just before the Whittlesea-Wallan Rd overpass.
* Caulfield Nth: in bound lanes, Dandenong Rd at the corner of Orrong
Rd. Camera testing site.
* Glenroy: outbound lane, Western Ring Rd, on the Pascoe Vale Rd
* East Keilor: outbound lane, Western Ring Rd, behind Keilor Park Drive
* Sth Yarra: inbound lane, Monash Freeway, behind a sign just before
Punt Rd crossover.
* Rowville: intersection of Stud and Wellington roads.