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Sydney Morning Herald - Thursday 29 May 2008

 

Speed traps still fail most schools

 

Jordan Baker Chief Police Reporter

Video: Kids still at risk from speeders

LESS than 1 per cent of schools attracted 95 per cent of the fines for speeding in school zones, while other schools averaged fewer than one each over six months, despite the NSW Government's crackdown on child safety last year, figures show.

Documents obtained under freedom-of-information laws show more than 125,000 fines were issued for speeding in school zones in the second half of 2007, after penalties were increased following the accident which injured Sophie Delezio.

Of those, 118,000 were issued by fixed speed cameras in fewer than 40 locations, while just 7139 were issued by police across about 10,000 school zones. There is no fixed speed camera at Sophie Delezio's northern beaches school.

The low number of fines has been blamed on safety rules limiting where officers can operate.

The most heavily fined location was on the Hume Highway at Bankstown, where eastbound and westbound cameras caught 19,033 motorists over six months, including 31 who exceeded the limit by more than 30kmh.

Other locations included the Pacific Highway at Lindfield, Avoca Street in Randwick and Botany Road at Rosebery.

Harold Scruby, the chairman of the Pedestrian Council, said the figures proved the reliance on high-visibility enforcement was nonsense. "Parents are being led to believe their children are safe when the opposite is true. There is no effective police enforcement in school zones where there are no fixed cameras. The cameras must be covert."

Last September, the Roads Minister, Eric Roozendaal, backed away from his promise to enforce school-zone speed limits by rotating covertly monitored mobile speed cameras through almost 11,000 zones across NSW.

At the time, he said: "Any school zone could have a camera in it." Instead, fixed cameras would monitor just 50 zones.

Strict industrial rules dictate where police can set up out-of-car speed cameras, and many school zones do not meet the criteria. Sources say there is also a shortage of in-car mobile cameras which rely on film.

Inspector David Evans, of the Traffic Services Command, said police spent many hours enforcing road rules in school zones.

"Our strategies are working," he said. "Sure there's a reduction in the police detecting speeding, but that doesn't mean the school zones are not being patrolled."

Mr Roozendaal said 39 of a promised 50 new speed cameras in school zones had been installed. The Government was delivering a package to improve school-zone safety, including foot crossings and flashing lights. "The Government can't get behind the wheel of every car - that's why I ask motorists to slow down in school zones because they are there to keep our children safe."

Worried parents at Gladesville Public School are campaigning for a speed camera, having just won their battle for flashing lights. The main entrance is on busy Victoria Road, but is slightly hidden from view.

Megan Quintiliani crosses Victoria Road every day with her children on their way to and from school. "It's very dangerous," she said. "You take your life into your own hands."

Yvette Vignando, the president of the school P and C, said: "The police are not able to safely enforce this stretch of road. They've actually told us that."

Ellie Harvey
 

© This work is copyright and is reproduced under licence from John Fairfax Holdings Limited
 

 
 
FREEDOM OF INFORMATION OBTAINED BY THE PEDESTRIAN COUNCIL OF AUSTRLIA
OBTAINED FROM THE NSW OFFICE OF STATE REVENUE - MAY 2008
N/A denotes not operating
Number of Penalty Notices issued by RTA Static Speed Cameras for offences in a School Zone                             between 01-Jul-2007 and 31-Dec-2007
Notes:
* Data is as at 19 March 2008 and may change retrospectively
* Only offences containing the words 'school' and 'zone' in the offence descriptions are included in the report
* Data is based on Penalty Notices with date of offence between 01-Jul-2007 and 31-Dec-2007 uploaded to the IMPS database at the reporting date
* Report contains only those notices issued under the infringement type of "RTA Static Speed Cameras"
Location Details (Street, Suburb, Direction, Postcode)

Grand Total 01Jul07-30Sep07

Grand Total 01Oct07-31Dec07

Difference Offences

Difference Percentage

AVOCA ST RANDWICK  Northbound 2031 1,931 1,305 -626 -32.42%
AVOCA ST RANDWICK  Southbound 2031 3,662 1,432 -2,230 -60.90%
BALGOWNIE ROAD   FAIRY MEADOW Eastbound 2500 45 38 -7 -15.56%
BALGOWNIE ROAD   FAIRY MEADOW Westbound 2500 43 50 7 16.28%
BIGGE STREET LIVERPOOL Northbound 2170

N/A

342

N/A

 

N/A

BIGGE STREET LIVERPOOL Southbound 2170

N/A

263

 

N/A

 

N/A

BLACKWALL RD  WOY WOY Northbound 2256

N/A

119

N/A

 

N/A

BOTANY RD ALEXANDRIA  Northbound 2015 1,031 678 -353 -34.24%
BOTANY RD ROSEBERY  Southbound 2018 3,739 2,453 -1,286 -34.39%
BUNNERONG RD EASTGARDENS Northbound 2036 2,747 607 -2,140 -77.90%
BUNNERONG RD MAROUBRA  Southbound 2035 3,620 2,372 -1,248 -34.48%
CABRAMATTA ROAD BONNYRIGG  Eastbound 2177

N/A

1,658

N/A

 

N/A

CABRAMATTA ROAD BONNYRIGG  Westbound 2177

N/A

2,295

N/A

 

N/A

CARLINGFORD ROAD   EPPING Eastbound 2121 280 258 -22 -7.86%
CARLINGFORD ROAD   EPPING Westbound 2121 468 360 -108 -23.08%
CENTRAL COAST HWY BATEAU BAY Northbound 2261 541 1,226 685 126.62%
EDGAR STREET CONDELL PARK  Northbound 2200

N/A

156

 

N/A

 

N/A

EDGAR STREET CONDELL PARK  Southbound 2200

N/A

173

N/A

 

N/A

FITZWILLIAM RD TOONGABBIE  Westbound 2146 41 65 24 58.54%
FITZWILLIAM ROAD TOONGABBIE  Eastbound 2146 277 213 -64 -23.10%
FOREST ROAD  HURSTVILLE  Northbound 2220

N/A

994

 

N/A

 

N/A

FOREST ROAD  HURSTVILLE  Southbound 2220

N/A

592

N/A

 

N/A

FOREST ROAD  PENSHURST  Eastbound 2222

N/A

67

 

N/A

 

N/A

FOREST ROAD  PENSHURST  Westbound 2222

N/A

618

N/A

 

N/A

GREAT WESTERN H'WAY PARRAMATTA  Eastbound 2150

N/A

1,014

N/A

 

N/A

GREAT WESTERN H'WAY PARRAMATTA  Westbound 2150 3,182 2,748 -434 -13.64%
HARBORD ROAD  NORTH CURL CURL  Northbound 2099

N/A

130

N/A

N/A

HARBORD ROAD  NORTH CURL CURL  Southbound 2099

N/A

672

N/A

N/A

HENRY PARRY DRIVE   WYOMING Northbound 2250 53 65 12 22.64%
HENRY PARRY DRIVE   WYOMING Southbound 2250 154 148 -6 -3.90%
HUME HIGHWAY ASHFIELD  Eastbound 2131 555 646 91 16.40%
HUME HIGHWAY ASHFIELD  Westbound 2131 511 616 105 20.55%
HUME HIGHWAY BANKSTOWN  Eastbound 2200 3,618 2,013 -1,605 -44.36%
HUME HIGHWAY BANKSTOWN  Westbound 2200 9,554 3,848 -5,706 -59.72%
KING GEORGES RD BEVERLY HILLS  Northbound 2209 2,986 909 -2,077 -69.56%
KING GEORGES RD BEVERLY HILLS  Southbound 2209 5,946 1,889 -4,057 -68.23%
KINGSWAY MIRANDA  Eastbound 2228

N/A

210

N/A

N/A

KINGSWAY MIRANDA  Westbound 2228

N/A

501

N/A

N/A

MACPHERSON STREET   MOSMAN Northbound 2088 217 178 -39 -17.97%
MACPHERSON STREET   MOSMAN Southbound 2088 138 98 -40 -28.99%
MALABAR RD MAROUBRA (B) Northbound 2035 395 314 -81 -20.51%
MALABAR RD MAROUBRA (B) Southbound 2035 169 151 -18 -10.65%
MERRYLANDS RD MERRYLANDS  Eastbound 2160 216 387 171 79.17%
MERRYLANDS RD MERRYLANDS  Westbound 2160 363 607 244 67.22%
NEW ENGLAND HIGHWAY LOCHINVAR Eastbound 2321 177 288 111 62.71%
NEW ENGLAND HIGHWAY LOCHINVAR Westbound 2321 163 357 194 119.02%
OCEAN BEACH ROAD  WOY WOY Northbound 2256 80 118 38 47.50%
OCEAN BEACH ROAD  WOY WOY Southbound 2256 72 85 13 18.06%
OLD NORTHERN RD CASTLE HILL  Eastbound 2154 637 738 101 15.86%
OLD NORTHERN RD CASTLE HILL  Westbound 2154 211 227 16 7.58%
PACIFIC HIGHWAY GATESHEAD Southbound 2290

198

522 324 163.64%
PACIFIC H'WAY LINDFIELD  Eastbound 2070

4,449

2,562 -1,887 -42.41%
PACIFIC H'WAY LINDFIELD  Westbound 2070

2,078

1,507 -571 -27.48%
PENNANT HILLS RD NTH PARRAMATTA  Northbound 2151 885 1,162 277 31.30%
PENNANT HILLS RD OATLANDS  Southbound 2117 210 252 42 20.00%
PITTWATER ROAD NARRABEEN  Northbound 2101

N/A

2,370

N/A

N/A

PITTWATER ROAD NARRABEEN  Southbound 2101

 

N/A

1,370

N/A

N/A

PRESIDENT AVENUE   GYMEA Eastbound 2227 80 123 43 53.75%
PRESIDENT AVENUE   GYMEA Westbound 2227 156 310 154 98.72%
PRINCES HIGHWAY   KOGARAH Northbound 2217 1,001 746 -255 -25.47%
PRINCES HIGHWAY   KOGARAH Southbound 2217 1,615 1,419 -196 -12.14%
PRINCES HWY   WEST WOLLONGONG Northbound 2500 117 194 77 65.81%
PRINCES HWY   WEST WOLLONGONG Southbound 2500 228 221 -7 -3.07%
SHERWOOD RD MERRYLANDS  Northbound 2160 405 284 -121 -29.88%
SHERWOOD RD MERRYLANDS  Southbound 2160 910 581 -329 -36.15%
VICTORIA ROAD RYDE  Eastbound 2112

N/A

1,227

N/A

 

N/A

 

 

VICTORIA ROAD RYDE  Westbound 2112

 

N/A

 

279

 

N/A

 

N/A

WOODVILLE RD GUILDFORD  Northbound 2161 666 832 166 24.92%
WOODVILLE RD GUILDFORD  Southbound 2161 2,413 1,612 -801 -33.20%
TOTAL SCHOOL ZONE OFFENCES PER PERIOD 63,233 54,864 -23,419 -37.04%
NSW POLICE - (Schoolzones - Lidar, Mobile Speed Camera etc.)

3,970

3,169 -801 -20.18%