Reason #46 to change the Government

Road Safety

I am not against speed cameras. They are an efficient enforcement tool, and used properly can and probably have led to a decrease in the road toll.

Prior to George Hawkins becoming Minister of Police, the policy was to set them to record and ticket the top 15% of speeds at a site. This recognised that not every road in NZ is the same and sensibly targeted the problem drivers.

Hawkins changed this so that every single motorist who is driving above the speed limit (and tolerance) gets ticketed. This means someone driving 111 km/hr on a four lane motorway with barriers gets ticketed while someone driving 109 km/hr on the Makara-Karori Road does not (which would be suicidal).

Targeting the top 15% of speeds at sites had high public acceptability, as it was seen to be fair. The current policy is more geared towards revenue generation and more importantly has been failing in the last couple of years.

Road deaths to 2 August this year have been 262 – an increase over two of the three previous years.

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