Press Releases

‘Speed cameras save lives’ campaign kicks off

* * - Wednesday, November 21, 2012
The Victorian Coalition Government has launched a new ad campaign highlighting that speed cameras save lives.

The campaign comes as new statistics reveal speeding on the Hume Freeway has halved since point-to-point cameras were turned on.

The See the Bigger Picture: Cameras Save Lives campaign was launched today by Minister for Police and Emergency Services Peter Ryan who was accompanied by two Victorian road accident survivors – Wendy Eccles who features in the advertisement, and London Paralympics wheelchair rugby gold medallist Josh Hose.

“This is a simple campaign with a powerful message – cameras save lives – and the campaign provides the facts to prove it,” Mr Ryan said.

“Some 47 per cent of crashes are avoided at intersections where a speed camera is installed –preventing death or serious injury.

“The cost of road trauma in Victoria is estimated to be $2.9 billion per year, while speed-related trauma costs $1 billion per year, with one person injured every 30 minutes.

“Fines from speed cameras equate to just eight per cent of the annual cost of road trauma.

“Both Ms Eccles and Mr Hose were involved in terrible crashes which has left them in wheelchairs. They are strong advocates for road safety and I welcome their support of this campaign.”

Mr Ryan said speed cameras, along with other road safety measures including the introduction of compulsory seatbelts and random breath tests, had cut the road toll by 800 lives since 1970.

“But more needs to be done, and the Coalition Government will announce a new Road Safety Strategy in the coming months,” Mr Ryan said.

The campaign will run statewide through November and early December this year. It was filmed in Warrnambool and features locals who have experienced the tragedy of road trauma or have been closely connected to it.

Mr Ryan said it was almost a year to the day that five young people from Warrnambool were killed in a horrific crash on their way to Dunkeld Races.

“I am proud to say that the Coalition Government, through the local agency GenR8 who produced this campaign, gave the funds allocated for professional actors to feature in the advertisement to local groups and charities whose members donated their time in return,” Mr Ryan said.

“The school that the five young people from Warrnambool graduated from in 2009, Emmanuel College, participated and put their donation towards a memorial garden.”

“I can only hope that this kind of tragedy never happens again. The Coalition Government will be doing everything in its power to make our roads safer, including increasing the use of speed cameras where appropriate.”

Camera figures released by the Coalition Government today reveal the number of motorists speeding on the Hume Freeway between Epping and Craigeburn has plunged from 19,280 in the 60 days before the point-to-point cameras were switched on, to just 9,200 in the 60 days after the cameras became active.

Victoria’s Road Safety Camera Commissioner starts

* * - Monday, February 06, 2012

From today, motorists will be represented by Australia’s first independent Road Safety Camera Commissioner as the Victorian Coalition Government continues to increase integrity measures around speed and red light cameras.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Police Peter Ryan said former County Court Judge Gordon Lewis AM would provide independent oversight of Victoria’s road safety camera system.

“Today marks another watershed moment in the Victorian Coalition Government’s efforts to provide greater transparency and public accountability around Victoria’s road safety camera system,” Mr Ryan said.

“The recent Auditor-General’s report, instigated by the Coalition Government, found speed and red-light cameras were accurate and focused on saving lives, not on raising revenue.

“The Coalition Government’s appointment of a Camera Commissioner will ensure motorists have an independent avenue to check the validity of Victoria’s road safety camera system.”

Mr Ryan said Judge Lewis would have the power to review and investigate any aspect of the camera system and make recommendations to government based on his investigations.

“The Commissioner will report to Parliament on an annual basis and his findings will also help to inform the Coalition Government’s road safety strategy,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Ryan said, in addition to being a former member of the County Court, Mr Lewis had extensive experience working across government, having overseen the review of integrity assurances in the Victorian racing industry.

The Road Safety Camera Commissioner’s office will perform the following roles:

  • quality assurance and reporting: to independently monitor and review current camera operations.
  • investigation and review: any part of the system at his own choosing, or if requested by the Minister to do so.
  • complaints management: so any person who feels they have been hard-done-by can lodge a complaint with the Camera Commissioner, though it will not be his role to intervene in individual cases; and
  • reference group: the Camera Commissioner will be able to establish a reference group of external advisors to assist him in his role.

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Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government had made a range of sweeping reforms to Victoria’s road safety camera system since the State Election.

“A new website www.camerassavelives.vic.gov.au was launched in 2011 to provide information about the number and value of traffic camera infringements, which was previously kept secret under the Labor government,” Mr Ryan said.

“The website is also regularly updated with clear information about how Victoria’s camera system worked in a bid to give greater transparency to our state’s road safety cameras.

“The Coalition Government has also expanded the use of roadside signs to promote road safety, especially on country roads, and we will continue to work with our road safety partners to reduce the incidence of fatalities and road trauma in Victoria.”

The Road Safety Camera Commissioner’s Office can be contacted on 1300 651 838 or by visiting www.cameracommissioner.vic.gov.au

Complaints or correspondence to the Commissioner should be in writing and addressed to the Road Safety Camera Commissioner, Locked Bag 14, Collins Street East, Melbourne VIC 8003.

Media contact:          Sonia Heath 0413 485 526

Road Safety Camera Commissioner appointed

* * - Friday, December 23, 2011

Former County Court Judge Gordon Lewis AM will become Australia’s first independent Road Safety Camera Commissioner,  Deputy Premier and Minister for Police and Emergency Services Peter Ryan said today.

“The Victorian Coalition Government is pleased to announce that Mr Lewis will start in the newly-created role in February as part of this government’s commitment to provide greater transparency and public accountability around road safety cameras,” Mr Ryan said.

“This is the first office of its kind to be established anywhere in Australia and motorists will be pleased to know they have a man of such integrity in charge of this significant new office providing another layer of confidence for all road users in Victoria.

“Judge Lewis is a decorated legal professional who will be able to provide ongoing support for motorists in regard to the state’s road safety cameras and their operation.”

Mr Ryan said the office of the Road Safety Camera Commissioner, which would include three full time staff, would provide the following essential functions:

  • quality assurance and reporting: to independently monitor and review current camera operations;
  • investigate and review: any part of the system at his own choosing, or if requested by the Minister to do so;
  • complaints management: so that any person who feels they have been hard-done-by can lodge a complaint with the Camera Commissioner, though it won’t be his role to intervene in individual cases; and
  • reference group: the Camera Commissioner will be able to establish a reference group of external advisors to assist him in his role.

“This is a significant day for Victorian motorists who will now have a permanent and independent office to assist with complaints and quality assurance of the state’s road safety camera program,” Mr Ryan said.

The independent Road Safety Camera Commissioner will have the capacity to review and investigate any aspect of the camera system and make appropriate recommendations.

Judge Lewis will report to Parliament on an annual basis.

Media contact:          Sonia Heath 0413 485 526

Rural road signs help spread road safety message

* * - Thursday, December 15, 2011

Road signs across rural Victoria will alert motorists to high-risk areas and help slow down speeding drivers.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Police Peter Ryan today announced that eight new signs were in place on freeways and highways in and out of Melbourne to reinforce the facts that speeding kills and cameras save lives.

“The signs are yet another way in which the Coalition Government is sending a strong message that if you speed, you will be caught,” Mr Ryan said.

“We know that speeding contributes to about 30 per cent of all road fatalities, so if speeding motorists slowed down we’d reduce last year’s road toll of 288 to about 200.”

The eight new signs are located on the Princes Hwy at: Tynong, the South Gippsland Hwy at Lang Lang; the Princes Hwy at Waurn Ponds; the Hamilton Hwy at Fyansford; the Midland Hwy at Gheringhap; the Western Fwy at Melton; the Calder Fwy at Diggers Rest; and the Hume Hwy at Beveridge.

Mr Ryan said the signs displayed the message “High Risk Area, Police Enforcing Speed” to notify motorists that if they exceeded the speed limit, they would be penalised.

“The signs will complement the 47 electronic variable messaging signs that have been used across Victoria since April and provide coverage on every major route outbound from Melbourne and Geelong to Victoria’s main rural cities.

“Motorists in rural and regional Victoria are overrepresented in our road toll so we have to get the message through to people on these roads that one of the easiest ways to stay safe is to simply obey the speed limits,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Ryan said the signs were part of the Coalition Government’s initiatives to provide transparency to Victoria’s speed camera use while making drivers aware of the dangers and reality of speeding.

“We are serious about reducing the road toll and highlighting the importance of safe and responsible driving, particularly as we head into the holiday period,” Mr Ryan said.

Media contact:  Clare Siddins 0429 507 541

Road safety cameras to be switched on at 32 locations

* * - Monday, October 03, 2011

Speed and red-light cameras will be progressively switched on at an additional 32 locations across Victoria from tomorrow, Deputy Premier and Minister for Police Peter Ryan announced today.

“These 32 cameras were first installed by the former Labor Government more than a year ago but the Coalition Government refused to activate them until the Auditor-General validated Victoria’s road safety camera program,” Mr Ryan said.

“This exhaustive report, recently tabled in Parliament, found Victoria’s road safety cameras were focused on road safety, not raising revenue, and that cameras save lives.

“Given that ringing endorsement I have now authorised the activation of these 32 cameras, which will be phased in on a weekly basis over the coming months.

“The activation of these cameras are timely as October was the worst month on our roads last year with 36 people fatalities, representing an eighth of the 2010 road toll in just one month.”

Mr Ryan said last October was indicative of previous years and that the Coalition Government and its road safety partners were determined to do everything possible to reduce the road carnage this October.

“Speed is responsible for about a third of all deaths on our roads and if these cameras slow speeding motorists down, they will save lives,” Mr Ryan said.

“These cameras are located at intersections across the state to deter motorists from flouting the road rules and endangering their own lives and the lives of others.”

Mr Ryan said a number of cameras would be switched on each week and details of their locations would be published on www.camerassavelives.vic.gov.au

The cameras that will be switched on this week are:


  • St Kilda Rd at Kings Way, Melbourne
  • Nicholson St at Princes St, Carlton
  • Dandenong Rd at Warrigal Rd, Malvern East
  • Williamsons Rd at Doncaster Rd, Doncaster
  • Cemetery Rd West at Royal Pde, Parkville
  • Springvale Rd at Lower Dandenong Rd, Braeside

 

** Please see the following page for a full list of 32 road safety cameras to be activated

 

 Camera Location

 At Intersection

 Suburb

1

Ballarat Rd

Ashley St

Maidstone

2

Barkly Street

Carlisle Street

St Kilda

3

Canterbury Rd

Colchester Rd

Kilsyth South

4

Cemetery Rd West

Royal Parade

Parkville

5

City Rd

Montague St

Sth Melbourne

6

Dandenong Rd

Warrigal Rd

Malvern East

7

Dandenong Rd

Clayton Road

Oakleigh East

8

Denmark St

Barkers Road

Kew

9

Exhibition St

Victoria St

Melbourne

10

Fitzroy St

Lakeside Drive

St Kilda

11

Heatherton Rd

Monash Fwy

Doveton

12

Hoddle St

Wellington Pde

East Melbourne

13

Hoddle St

Johnston St

Collingwood

14

Kings Rd

Melton Hwy

Taylors Lakes

15

Mahoneys Rd

High St

Thomastown

16

Maribyrnong Rd

Mt Alexander Rd

Moonee Ponds

17

Maroondah Hwy

Springvale Rd

Nunawading

18

Nicholson St

Princes St

Carlton

19

Princes Hwy

Sth Gippsland Fwy

Eumemmerring

20

Princes Hwy

Elonera Rd

Noble Park North

21

Prospect Hill Rd

Burke Road

Camberwell

22

Punt Rd

High Street

Prahran

23

Punt Rd

Toorak Rd

South Yarra

24

Raglan Pde

Mahoneys Rd

Warrnambool

25

South Gippsland Hwy

Thompsons Rd

Cranbourne North

26

Springvale Rd

Lower Dandenong Rd

Braeside

27

St Kilda Road

Kings Way

Melbourne

28

Stud Rd

Heatherton Rd

Dandenong

29

Warrigal Rd

North Road

Oakleigh 

30

Warrigal Rd

Centre Dandenong Rd

Cheltenham

31

Warrigal Rd

Batesford Rd

Chadstone

32

Williamsons Road

Doncaster Rd

Doncaster

 

** The 32 sites listed will commence activation from 4 October 2011

 

 

Media contact:   Sonia Heath 0413 485 526

Independent Road Safety Camera Commissioner Bill passes Parliament

* * - Thursday, September 15, 2011
Victoria will soon have Australia’s first independent Road Safety Camera Commissioner after new legislation passed through Parliament today.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Police and Emergency Services Peter Ryan said the Road Safety Camera Commissioner Bill 2011 would see the introduction of a Road Safety Camera Commissioner to give Victorians greater assurance around the integrity of road safety cameras.

“The Commissioner will have wide-ranging powers to investigate and receive complaints and be responsible for quality assurance, reporting and reviews,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government came into office with a clear commitment to increasing transparency around speed and red light cameras.

“We know that motorists want greater integrity underpinning the operation of road safety cameras in Victoria and the independent Road Safety Camera Commissioner will help achieve this.”

The independent Road Safety Camera Commissioner, appointed by the Governor-in-Council, will:

• oversee the accuracy and fairness of the road safety camera system, including regularly reviewing and assessing the system, and report annually to Parliament;
• investigate matters related to the integrity, accuracy and efficiency of the automatic road safety camera system; and
• receive and handle complaints raised by one or more people which pointed to systemic problems regarding the road safety camera network.

“The appointment of a Commissioner, which is in the process of being finalised, is among a range of Coalition Government initiatives underway to change the culture of speeding,” Mr Ryan said.

“An investigation by Victoria’s Auditor-General last month found speed and red-light cameras are focused on road safety, not raising revenue. It also found cameras had led to reduced speeding, fewer crashes and less road trauma.

“Cameras save lives and this new law will provide Victorians with confidence that the state’s road safety camera network is accurate and has proper oversight.”

For more information around Victoria’s road safety cameras visit www.camerassavelives.vic.gov.au

Media: Sonia Heath 0413 485 526

Road safety cameras save lives in regional Victoria

* * - Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wednesday 31 August 2011

Speed and red light cameras are an important tool in reducing fatalities on city and country roads, a complete audit of the state’s road safety camera system has found.

Deputy Premier and Police Minister Peter Ryan requested the Auditor-General review Victoria’s road safety camera program as part of a suite of measures announced by the Coalition Government to provide greater integrity around speed and red-light cameras.

“This report, tabled in Parliament today, found Victoria’s speed and red-light cameras are focused on road safety, not raising revenue,” Mr Ryan said.

“Auditor-General Des Pearson has independently validated the state’s road safety camera program and quashed the common misconception these cameras are revenue raisers.”

Mr Ryan said the report underscored the fairness of Victoria Police’s approach to issuing infringements from the road safety camera program in regional and rural Victoria.

The A-G report found:

• camera locations are based on road safety outcomes and not on maximising revenue;
• infringements are issued only where there is clear evidence of speeding or red-light running;
• revenue from infringements is allocated to the Better Roads Victoria Trust Account, which funds projects to improve roads; and
• better communication is needed around the importance of road safety cameras to address misconceptions about the program. 

“The Coalition Government believes cameras save lives but it is also important that motorists have confidence in the entire system, from the accuracy of the cameras to the way in which fines are issued, and this report provides a ringing endorsement of the program,” Mr Ryan said.

“I would encourage anyone who has doubts or concerns about the state’s road safety camera program to read this report.”

Mr Ryan said speed was one of the biggest killers in the state and that this was particularly relevant on country roads where road trauma had increased in recent times.

“Sadly, road accident fatalities in regional Victoria increased by 13 per cent last year and there was a 59 per cent increase in the number of fatal accidents in regional Victoria caused directly by speed,” Mr Ryan said.

“Speed cameras will continue to play a vital road safety role in regional areas, alongside other important initiatives such as Victoria Police’s Regional Road Trauma Reduction strategy launched in July.

“The Coalition Government is also expanding the use of roadside signs to promote road safety, especially on country roads.”

Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government was delivering on its election commitment to provide greater transparency, integrity and public accountability around speed and red-light cameras.

“Our plan includes the appointment of Australia’s first independent Road Safety Camera Commissioner to monitor and review all aspects of the state’s speed and red-light camera operations,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Ryan said the Auditor-General had made eight recommendations in his report about how to further strengthen Victoria’s road safety camera program.

“It is now the role of Government and Victoria’s road safety partners to work through these recommendations to improve road safety and reduce death and serious injury on metropolitan and country roads,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Ryan said road trauma cost the Victorian economy an estimated $3.8 billion a year and that the Coalition Government would continue to implement measures to improve road safety.

Media contact:  Clare Siddins 0429 507 541

Vic Coalition Govt releases Hume Cameras report

* * - Thursday, June 23, 2011

Thursday 23 June 2011

The Victorian Coalition Government today released the findings of a report into the Hume Highway point to point (P2P) cameras, commissioned by the former Labor Government.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Police Peter Ryan said Victorians were entitled to see the findings of the Deloitte review which had independently verified the process undertaken by the Department of Justice and camera operator Redflex to investigate the Hume P2P cameras.

“Victorians have been concerned about the integrity of the Hume P2P cameras after they were switched off by Victoria Police last October when nine infringements issued were found to be incorrect,” Mr Ryan said.

“The release of this independent report is another step in helping to restore the community’s confidence in the state’s road safety camera systems.”

Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government had already provided the Deloitte report to the Auditor-General who was currently investigating the state’s road safety camera program.

“The Coalition Government is pleased the Deloitte review has verified only nine infringements were incorrectly issued, however no decision will be made about switching the Hume cameras back on until the Auditor-General has completed his investigation,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Ryan said the $131,000 bill to engage Deloitte had been largely absorbed through a fine to Redflex for breaching its contractual obligations in issuing nine incorrect infringements.

Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government was continuing to deliver on its election promise to provide greater transparency around the state’s road safety cameras.

“Motorists can now refer to a weekly publication of mobile speed camera locations and a new and improved website – www.camerassavelives.vic.gov.au – and the Auditor-General is investigating the state’s entire road safety camera system,” Mr Ryan said.

“These are among a suite of initiatives undertaken by the Coalition Government because it believes motorists deserve to know more about road safety cameras in Victoria.

“Further to this, there is currently legislation before the Parliament to establish the first Road Safety Camera Commissioner in Australia,” Mr Ryan said.
Media contact: Clare Siddins 0429 507 541

Stop revive survive this long weekend

* * - Wednesday, April 20, 2011

State Emergency Services volunteers deployed the ‘jaws of life’ on a car wreck in a live demonstration at the launch the annual Driver Reviver Campaign at Federation Square today.

 

Deputy Premier and Minister for Police and Emergency Services Peter Ryan officially kick-started the campaign and encouraged Victorians to do everything they could to avoid tragedy on the roads this Easter long weekend.

 

“This is an all-to-familiar scene for SES volunteers and this Easter long weekend I urge all people on the state’s roads to take their time and take advantage of Driver Reviver rest stops around Victoria,” Mr Ryan said.

 

“The Easter long weekend is the busiest time of the year for the Driver Reviver campaign, with more than 500 volunteers providing refreshments to travellers at more than 50 locations across the state.

 

“Taking a break at one of the Driver Reviver rest stops will help motorists to refresh, stay alert and significantly reduce the likelihood of having an accident.”

 

Mr Ryan said each year the Driver Reviver campaign provided 200,000 cups of tea and coffee to weary drivers in a bid to improve safety and save lives.

 

“Fatigue is a major cause of crashes in Victoria, resulting in an average of 70 deaths and approximately 500 serious injuries each year,” Mr Ryan said.  

 

“Drivers should remember that when on the road, you’re responsible not only for your own safety but also the safety of your passengers and other road users.

 

“The Easter period is one of the busiest times on the state’s roads. During 2010 more than one quarter of Victoria’s road fatalities sadly took place during holiday periods.”

Mr Ryan said volunteers from VICSES and Lions Club would operate Driver Reviver sites on major roads throughout the state from Thursday 21 April through to Tuesday 26 April.

New Cameras Save Lives website goes live

* * - Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Victorians will be given greater insight into the state’s speed and red-light camera network and have access to previously undisclosed data on infringements with the launch of the new Cameras Save Lives website today.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Police and Emergency Services Peter Ryan said the website was a valuable road safety resource for motorists, and delivered on the Coalition Government’s promise to provide greater transparency around speed and red-light cameras.

“Speed and red light cameras play a crucial role in making our roads safer by encouraging motorists to slow down but the Coalition Government understands some motorists have questioned the use of road safety cameras,” Mr Ryan said.

“The Coalition came to government with a firm commitment to improve the integrity of Victoria’s road safety camera system and this new website will help achieve this.”

Mr Ryan said the Cameras Saves Lives website demystified how Victoria’s camera system worked, by providing user-friendly access to a range of information, from testing of the cameras right through to verification of infringements.

“Victorians now have access to information about how the camera network operates, the technology used, as well as all the statistics on the number and types of fines issued from specific cameras,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Ryan said the website would serve as a valuable educational tool, with information and research on the relationship between speed and road trauma, as well as animations and technical details about how cameras worked.

“This new website is being launched in time for Easter, which is one of the busiest and most dangerous times on our roads,” Mr Ryan said.

The new website will include the list of weekly mobile speed cameras and the locations of all Victoria’s fixed cameras, including intersection and highway sites across the state.

 

Managed by the Department of Justice, the Cameras Save Lives website will publish quarterly speed and red-light camera statistics, including:

  • data on the dollar value of traffic camera infringements;
  • camera locations with the highest number of infringements; 
  • the number of infringements by speeding category offence; and
  • the number of people who receive official warnings.

Mr Ryan said the website was one of a number of initiatives introduced by the Coalition Government as part of its sweeping reforms to provide greater transparency, integrity and public accountability around speed and red-light cameras.

“The Coalition Government recently announced it will appoint Australia’s first independent Road Safety Camera Commissioner to monitor and review all aspects of the state’s speed and red-light camera operations,” Mr Ryan said.

“In addition, the Coalition has asked the Victorian Auditor-General to extensively investigate all issues he sees as relevant to the operation of speed cameras.

“Just last week I launched the state-wide rollout of extra roadside safety signs as yet another means to help encourage motorists to slow down and obey the speed limit.

“The Cameras Saves Lives website, along with other sweeping changes to Victoria’s traffic camera system, will give Victorians greater confidence the network is reliable, accurate and operated fairly.”

Visit www.camerassavelives.vic.gov.au for all the latest information about Victoria’s speed and red-light cameras.


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