“ONE SPEEDER IS TOO MANY”: Camera’s effect at Ulmarra
POLICE have said speed cameras at Ulmarra have contributed to a less serious result in a collision on its notorious bend.
However, they are still concerned of the levels of speeding exhibited through the town.
Figures from the Department of State Revenue show that since the bypass was opened, speeding offences have dropped by almost half.
Over the past three months an average of 346 speeders per month have been caught by the camera, a drop by almost two thirds from an average of 942 per month for the same time last year.
Grafton Police Sergeant Dallas Leven confirmed that speed was not a factor in a collision yesterday between a sedan and a truck-and-dog trailer underneath the speed camera, with investigations continuing into whether driver error was to blame.
“Considering both vehicles were travelling at low speed, it has contributed to the incident not being serious,” he said.
“It is pleasing that the number of speeding offences has reduced, however given the reduction in the volume of traffic, we’d like to see those numbers come down even further.”
Longtime Ulmarra speed camera advocate John Leask couldn’t agree more.
“Even one car speeding is one car too many,” he said.
“Especially in a built up area.”
Mr Leask said the benefits of the speed camera, as well as the reduction in traffic had made the area safer.
“It definitely makes a difference,” he said. “At one point RMS figures showed the average speed through the area before the speed camera was 78km/h — and you work out what kind of speed some must’ve been doing to make it average like that.”
Figures show that the highest speed detected through the area in the July period was between 70-80km/h, with one driver fined $2248 for the offence.
This contrasts with more than 20-30 people fined for this speed range or higher in the months preceding the bypass.
“I think they’re slowly learning,” Mr Leask said.
“We’ve had too many people speeding through, and it leads to a lack of caution, so any reduction is good.”
Mr Leask said that there had been a reduction of traffic by 50 per cent through the township, so it put the reduction in fines in a better light.
“The cameras are working their magic for our goal of a safer community,” he said.
The figures show that southbound travellers are still being detected by the camera, with more than two thirds of the total in July travelling in that direction.
Mr Leask said he believed that there was a lot in the township that distracted from speed camera warnings, and perhaps lights or a similar warning sign on the northern approach would reduce the offences further.
Since their installation in December 2018, the Ulmarra speed cameras have detected more than 16,000 speeding drivers, generating fines of more than $3m.