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Speed cameras save lives

Speed cameras save lives

Drivers who dismiss Police speed cameras as a revenue gathering exercise should think again, says ACC Chief Executive Garry Wilson.

"New Zealanders love to speed with a disregard for the consequences – speed cameras help change this approach to life," Mr Wilson said.

"Speed cameras have played a valuable role in slowing down traffic to legal limits and thereby reducing road fatalities and injuries in recent years. ACC fully supports their use by the Police," he said.

"We would like to see more speed cameras used more frequently so that driving within the legal limits became the norm." Research shows that speeding motorists run a much greater risk of crashing, and that the number and severity of injuries rises disproportionately as speeds go up.

Excessive speed contributed to thirty percent of last year’s fatal crashes and 15 percent of injury crashes. Speed kills – it is as simple as that!

"The cost is phenomenal with speeding motorists responsible for more than their share of the $334 million ACC spent to support road accident victims last year," Mr Wilson said.

Mr Wilson said there were other options other than financial penalties for speedsters, including demerit points, leading to a loss of licence.

"Most of the feedback we have is that folk would rather pay a fine than lose their licence – but losing their licence is an option those who criticise fines as revenue gathering should contemplate."

National Road Policing Manager, Superintendent Steve Fitzgerald says the Police are directing anti-speed activities at the areas of greatest risk.

"Everybody knows that speeding is dangerous and we know that reducing speeds will reduce the trauma associated with road crashes," he said.

"When a vehicle crashes, there is a rapid change in speed. The more rapid that change, the more severe the injuries."

Anyone who has watched the recent TV advertisement which depicts two parallel cars travelling at slightly different speeds would appreciate that even small changes in speed mean a greatly increased potential for crashes and injuries, he said.

The chance of a pedestrian being killed when struck by a car also rises four-fold to 80 percent when the vehicle's speed rises from 35 kph to 50 kph. Anything over the limit would almost certainly cause death.


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