Speeding fines skyrocket

Published:
19/02/2021

NSW Government data has revealed Chatswood’s Penshurst Street recorded the highest number of speeding fines by a mobile speed camera in the state in December, with 398 issued.

Fines from the northbound-facing camera more than tripled on the previous month, with revenue generated surging to a record monthly high of $77,000 at the end of 2020.

In comparison, the total value of fines was just over $14,000 for the same month in 2019.

The sharp increase in fines follows the State Government’s recent overhaul of the mobile speed camera program, removing vehicle markings, scrapping warning signs for the cameras and increasing enforcement time.

From November 19 last year, warning signs are no longer placed 250 metres before and 50 metres after speed camera cars.

Meanwhile, 30 per cent of camera vehicles across the state have been stripped of identifying markings and enforcement hours have tripled from 7,000 hours per month to 21,000.

Despite criticism from the NRMA that the changes stop driver education in real time, the NSW Government has defended the move, saying it will improve road safety. 

“We have seen how having no warning signage for mobile phone detection cameras has deterred people from using their phones illegally behind the wheel, we want the same effect with speeding,” Transport for NSW (TfNSW) deputy secretary for Safety, Environment and Regulation, Tara McCarthy, told North Shore Living.

“The changes to the mobile speed camera program are designed to make our roads safer by reducing speeding across the state – not just when a driver or rider sees a warning sign for a camera.”

She says she expects the number of fines issued to ‘stabilise and decrease’ as the community responds to the changes. 

“As motorists begin to get the message that they can, and will, be caught anywhere any time on the NSW road network by mobile speed cameras, we will see speeding decline and the trauma from speed-related fatalities will reduce.”

TfNSW says Penshurst Street was chosen as the site for a mobile speed camera due to its demonstrated crash history.

In the five-year period between 2015 and 2019, there were 35 crashes on the one kilometre stretch of road between Boundary Street and Victoria Avenue which resulted in 35 people being injured, including six sustaining serious injuries. 

Author:
Stephanie Aikins

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