This week we were researching double demerit points and which states in Australia run a double demerit point scheme.
While we were researching, we stumbled across one of the most random offences and it’s worth a staggering 14 demerit points during this double demerit points long weekend.
That offence is in Western Australia and the offence relates to the use of a radar detector or laser jammer.
What exactly is a radar detector or a laser jammer? They’re both devices used to disrupt police speed enforcement. A radar detector is able to detect a radar signal pointed toward it and alert the driver, giving them enough time to slow down as the police vehicle or radar continues to detect speed and locks on your vehicle as a target.
A laser jammer on the other hand actively jams signals from a police laser by detecting the signal, decoding it and transmitting a reply. The reply transmitted to the police officer’s laser unit is a bogus signal at the correct frequency that causes it to display no speed or an error message for a number of seconds.
So you can see why both of these devices are not really favoured by police.
They come with an equally unfavourable penalty. During non-double demerit point weekends, the fine is worth $1500 and seven demerit points. The exact offence is called “Driving with any device that would adversely affect speed measuring equipment” and the offence costs the same whether the driver is in a heavy vehicle or vehicle other than a heavy vehicle.
Fast forward to a double demerit point weekend and that offence doubles in terms of the demerit points, costing the driver an incredible 14 demerit points.
An open licence driver can accrue a maximum of 12 demerit points in a three year period before they lose their licence, so just one of these offences during a double demerit point period would see you walking for some time.
Novice drivers can only obtain four or eight demerit points in any three year period.
So, moral of the story is don’t use a radar detector or a laser jammer in Western Australia – especially during a double demerit points weekend.