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Parliamentary Questions

Question Without Notice No. 113 asked in the Legislative Council on 21 February 2019 by Hon Charles Smith

Minister responding: Hon M.H. Roberts
Parliament: 40 Session: 1

Answered on


113. Hon CHARLES SMITH to the minister representing the Minister for Police:

I refer to the PerthNow news article titled, ''Police Minister's push for secret speed camera locations''.

(1) Why are speed cameras and radars often placed behind obstacles so that motorists cannot see them on approach?

(2) Is there any substantive evidence which shows hidden speed cameras reduce accidents?


I thank the honourable member for some notice of the question. The following information has been provided to me by the Minister for Police, who had the information provided to her by the Western Australia Police Force.

(1) The WA Police Force advises that speed cameras must have at least 70 metres of clear space for vehicle detections, and that mobile speed cameras are deployed in a manner that is safe and secure for both the camera operator and equipment. Speed cameras are placed in locations based on various information, such as traffic volume, speeding motorists, complaints from the public, antisocial driver behaviour and known black spots for serious crashes. All traffic enforcement efforts are targeted to reduce road trauma and to detect priority traffic offences, such as speeding.

(2) The WA Police Force advises that contemporary research and review has identified that the use of mobile speed cameras in unexpected locations would likely have a direct link to modifying driver behaviour and reducing road trauma. A report by the New South Wales Auditor General from 18 October 2018 identified that an effective general network deterrence is created by a perception that speeding can be enforced anywhere, at any time. The NSW Auditor General concluded that warning signs at MSC locations reduced the likelihood of achieving a general network deterrence. The awareness of speed camera sites reduces the perceived risk of detection, thereby limiting the ability of MSCs to moderate driver behaviour at other locations. The Curtin Monash Accident Research Centre in September 2006 assessed that the use of covert MSCs would enhance the existing WA Police Force speed camera program.