New driver behaviour cameras: Safety initiative or cash grab?

The Victorian police force is beginning to implement the use of high spec traffic cameras that can zoom in up to 700 meters away.  The aim is to help catch offending drivers texting, eating, applying make-up and even not wearing seat belts.

The technology was made available to the Victoria Police last week and after an intensive course, Sergeant Robert Hill of the Victorian Police Force has confirmed that they will be out on the roads from today onwards. There are plans to implement these cameras all over Australia in a campaign to prevent driver distraction. But, are they appropriate? Or is it just a resource to grab more money?




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They have come out to coincide with the Australia road safety blitz, that every year sees thousands of drivers caught for speeding; drink driving and driving distraction at Easter time.

The police force is anticipating they will have huge success catching drivers who are using their mobile phone while driving and the numbers of offenders is set to soar.

The question is, are these new, hi-tech cameras the best way to use funding? Are they focusing on the wrong things?

Already, people are expressing their frustration at the new cameras on social media saying they are “too intrusive” and a “bad use of the little money the Australian police have”.

Sergeant Hill stated to the Sydney Morning Herald, “With these cameras we can see from 700m away who is distracted and who is not concentrating.”

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“We can see them before they can see us.” “We don’t need to actually see them holding their mobile phone for them to be breaching the road rules.”

“So if someone is clearly distracted by taking their eyes off the road and looking at their mobile phone on their lap, whether it be texting or whatever, they could still be infringed for offences such as using a hand held mobile phone while driving, careless driving or failing to have proper control of a vehicle.”

The infringement fine is $433.00 in most states and it seems like they will be given out with ease with the new cameras.

So we want you to have your say, are these cameras a good initiative that will make our roads safer? Or are they a tool in a massive money grab? Tell us in the comments below…