PLEASE READ - Speed cameras VIC - new 3km over policy
Melbourne members read this load of crap (todays Herald Sun), the 10% leaway has gone, they are only giving 3 km/h over the limit eg. new limits, 53, 63, ...........etc. Are they assuming our speedos are 100% correct, idiots, just plain revenue raising.
Speed camera leeway to get tougher
By PETER MICKELBUROUGH, chief police reporter
THOUSANDS of unsuspecting drivers could be booked for speeding under a new police policy to abandon traditional tolerance levels.
Being just 3km/h above any speed limit now will result in fines if caught by speed cameras, radars and lasers.
Drivers traditionally have escaped fines if they were less than 10 per cent over the limit -- 66km/h in a 60 zone, 88km/h in an 80 zone, and so on.
This was in line with the official national standard of plus-or-minus 10 per cent accuracy for speedometers.
The new crackdown means drivers now could be fined even if their speedometer shows they are driving under the limit.
The clamp comes as speed camera operations are being dramatically boosted across Victoria. Speed cameras will be in use 50 per cent more often.
More drivers are expected to lose their licences through the demerit point system as millions of dollars in extra fine revenue to flow to the State Government.
The state's peak motoring body last night attacked the police plan as flawed.
But acting Assistant Commissioner (traffic) Bob Hastings said winding back tolerance levels was part of the Arrive Alive campaign to encourage people to drive 5km/h slower.
Mr Hastings said the 3km/h tolerance limit reflected the accuracy of the state's speed cameras, laser and radar guns.
"Cribbing 5km or 10km is no longer acceptable because it causes death and injury," he said.
"As technology becomes better and more sophisticated, equipment becomes available even that 3km/h tolerance may need to be reviewed as well."
Mr Hastings admitted the traditional 10 per cent tolerance had reflected Australian design standards for speedometers.
But he said research showed only a few vehicles had speedometers that underestimated speed by more than 3km/h.
Premier Steve Bracks admitted more people were likely to be booked under lower tolerance levels, but it was "entirely a police decision".
Police Minister Andre Haermeyer said the Monash University Accident Research Centre found post-1992 speedometers were accurate because they were digital and were deliberately calibrated to show faster-than-actual speed.
Mr Haermeyer said 2 per cent of the pre-1992 vehicles tested had inaccurate speedometers.
"It is also the responsibility of the drivers to make sure you have an accurate speedometer, just as it's your responsibility to make sure your brakes aren't faulty," he said.
More than half of Victoria's three million vehicles were made before 1992.
Legal advice obtained by the Herald Sun yesterday suggested the inaccuracy of a speedometer would not be a defence against a fine.
Australian Design Rule 18 states: "Unless otherwise approved, every vehicle shall be fitted with a speedometer which shall . . . indicate the actual vehicle speed above 40km/h, to an accuracy of plus or minus 10 per cent."
The RACV said the police plan was inconsistent with existing speedometer standards and failed to take into account that existing speed limits had been set on the basis of 10 per cent tolerance.
RACV manager government relations, David Cumming, warned the public could lose confidence in speed cameras as a deterrent if the 3km/h tolerance policy was pursued.
"To book motorists for speeds less than 10 per cent above the stated limit would be inconsistent and have a negative effect on motorist support for road safety initiatives," Mr Cumming said.
He called on the Government to review the tolerance regime as part of a wider review of speed management.
Mr Cumming said it was vital to ensure all speeding fines were put to use in road safety programs as a part of the review.
"Speeding fines should not be seen as a revenue source for the State's Treasury," he said.
Opposition transport spokesman Geoff Leigh said the force was putting at risk the community's respect by putting people in a position where they could be unknowingly breaking the law. Mr Haer meyer denied the changes were revenue driven.
"That's just giving moral comfort to those who go out every day and endanger themselves and the lives of others," he said.
Mr Haermeyer said the level of fines were insignificant compared with the cost of road trauma to the community and the money spent on emergency services and improving roads to make them safer.
TAC spokeswoman De-Arnne Schmidt backed the police move saying about 100 lives and more than 1300 serious injuries would be avoided each year if drivers slowed down by just 5km/h.
"We know that speed is a killer and drivers should really obey the speed limit because it is there for the protection of the community," Ms Schmidt said.