In today’s Australia, it’s hard to avoid traffic cameras. Each state and territory has a network of speed and red-light cameras, while many of our nation’s intersections have cameras that scan for both speeding and red-light offences.
In Victoria, the Department of Justice and Community Services is responsible for managing and maintaining the state’s network of speed cameras.
These are predominantly fixed and mobile cameras, though there’s a point-to-point system used on the Hume Highway and Peninsula Link that measures average speeds over distance.
There are currently over 246 speed cameras and 175 red light cameras operating throughout Victoria, with the first red light camera entering operation in 1983.
The Victorian Government is getting tougher on traffic offenders, announcing as part of the 2020-21 budget it would fast-track the deployment of new mobile cameras. Originally intended for completion by May 2023, these will now be ready by April 2021.
An additional $15.1 million will also be spent over three years in speeding enforcement, with the Government announcing a planned 75 per cent increase in mobile traffic camera hours from May 2021.
In the 2019-20 financial year, Victoria generated $330 million in revenue from traffic camera fines. It’s projecting total revenue of $475 million this financial year, or a 44 per cent increase, and it’s expecting that to increase again to $524 million the following financial year.
Last financial year, there were 1,077,586 infringements issued for speed and red-light offences. That was actually a decrease of 11.2 per cent over the previous year, or 10.4 per cent for all speed cameras and 16.8 per cent for red light cameras.
“Victoria’s road safety camera program plays a critical role in changing driver behaviour and saving lives and these cameras help prevent road trauma and reduce the number of motorists doing the wrong thing,” said a spokesperson from the Department of Justice and Community Safety.
“Too many lives have been lost on our roads already this year and it’s up to every motorist to make the right decisions when they’re behind the wheel. When they don’t, road safety cameras and Victoria Police are there to hold them accountable.”
Exceeding the speed limit in Victoria by less than 10km/h will cost you $207 ($289 in a heavy vehicle) and one demerit point.
Going over the speed limit by 10-24km/h increases that to $330 and three demerit points. For heavy vehicles, there are two different fines that both include a penalty of three demerit points: $454 for speeding by 10-14km/h over the limit, and $661 for 15-24km/h.
You’re then looking at a licence suspension for going 25km/h or more over the speed limit, regardless of the type of vehicle you’re driving. The only exception is if you’re doing 20-24km/h over the speed limit in a 110km/h zone, where you’ll only surrender $330 and three demerit points.
Run any red light and you’ll be $413 and three demerit points poorer.
The Department of Justice and Community Safety detailed the top five fixed and mobile camera locations with the highest infringement revenue.
The data doesn’t break out speeding offences specifically, as it also includes unregistered vehicle offences and, for fixed locations, red-light offences.
The top five fixed locations were:
- Intersection of Rosanna Road and Darebin Street in Heidelberg (northbound) with 23,807 infringements
- Intersection of Warrigal Road and Batesford Road in Chadstone with 23,401 infringements
- Intersection of King Street and La Trobe Street in West Melbourne Lane with 18,502 infringements
- Intersection of Fitzroy Street and Lakeside Drive in St Kilda with 18,107 infringements
- Intersection of Terminal Drive and Centre Road at Melbourne Airport with 11,593 infringements
Fewer infringements were recorded at the top mobile locations, however the DJCS notes camera site descriptions may vary over time due to the repositioning of cameras at different points of an intersection, as well as suburb boundary changes.
The top five mobile locations were:
- Black Forest Road in Wyndham Vale, between Brimpton Grove and McGrath Road with 3740 infringements
- Wetherby Road in Doncaster, between Doncaster Road and Koonung Creek with 3422 infringements
- Oak Street in Parkville, between Park Street and Manningham Street, with 3338 infringements
- Bell Street in Preston, between Harold Street and Watson Street, with 3321 infringements
- Ballarat Road in Footscray, between Geelong Road and Jamieson Avenue, with 2930 infringements