Saturday, February 26, 2011


Peter Rolfe From: Sunday Herald Sun February 26, 2011
Hu Hu Chen

Hu Hu Chen is infuriated after getting a fine for doing 54 km/h in a 50km/h zone at Oakleigh. Source: Herald Sun

LEADFOOT motorists have poured more than $200 million into State Government coffers with new figures showing 146 drivers an hour are caught speeding on Victorian roads.

A comprehensive breakdown of every speeding fine issued in the state, released exclusively to the Sunday Herald Sun, paints a clear picture of how infringements are handed out from mobile and fixed speed cameras and on-the-spot police.

More than 3500 speeding fines were issued every day - 1.2 million in total - delivering $227 million to the Government last financial year.

But almost three-quarters of the fines were for the slowest possible category of offence - driving at less than 10km/h over the legal limit.

More than 923,300 speeding drivers - 72 per cent - booked were travelling less than 10km/h over the limit.

Fines for the lowest offence netted the Government $137 million.

Truganina motorist Hu Hu Chen received his first and only fine for travelling at 54km/h in a 50km/h zone at Oakleigh last year and said he was still infuriated by the experience.

"I thought it was pretty harsh," he said. "I had no idea until I got the fine in the mail. It's not like I was hooning around. If I had braked a second earlier, I wouldn't have even been fined."

A Northcote resident, who asked not to be named, said speed restrictions in Melbourne's northern suburbs were getting out of control.

"I am hardly what you would call a hoon driver," he said. "But if I get one more fine I will probably lose my licence for having accumulated so many points.

"And each fine has been for exceeding a 50km/h restriction by six-or-so km/h."

There were 146 speeding fines issued every hour on average, according to the statistics. That is 2.4 a minute.

The Government also cashed in on increases in speeding offences, collecting an additional $4.6 million by increasing the cost of individual fines by between $3 and $17.

But Police Minister Peter Ryan defended the level of revenue raised.

"Those who choose to exceed the speed limit do so with the knowledge they will be penalised," he said.

"Speed and red-light cameras save lives, but the Coalition understands Victorians need to believe cameras are reliable, accurate and operate fairly."

Victoria Police Road Policing Superintendant Neville Taylor welcomed community debate, but said police made no apologies for booking motorists just over the limit.

With speed attributed to 30 per cent of road deaths last year, he warned that police would fine even more speeding drivers this year to bring down the road toll.

"Often the attitude of people is 'I was just a little bit over' but it's our goal to change that behaviour," he said. "Our clear message is that if you're a couple of kilometres over - or a lot over - we will get you."

Supt Taylor said there would be a 20 per cent cut in fatalities and a 14 per cent drop in serious injuries if all motorists slowed by 5km/h.

The data also reveals the extent of offences committed at the other end of the scale.

More than 2160 hoons were caught speeding at 45km/h or more over the speed limit last year. Police booked 806 drivers for racing at speeds of 20km/h or more above the 110km/h limits.

Total revenue from speeding and red-light camera fines was about $315 million last year.

No comments:

Post a Comment