A member of the NSW Nationals has labelled the State Government’s decision to remove warning signs for mobile speed cameras a “disgrace” and “absurd”.
- Warnings signs for mobile speed cameras in NSW will be phased out
- Nationals MLC Wes Fang says the move unfairly disadvantages rural and regional motorists
- Roads Minister Paul Toole has defended the change
Transport Minister Andrew Constance today said the signs would be removed over the next 12 months in an effort to change the culture and behaviour of motorists.
The number of hours the cameras operate will also triple as part of changes the Coalition is implementing in an attempt to reduce the road toll.
But Wagga Wagga-based Nationals MLC Wes Fang accused his Liberal colleague of making the decision without recently presenting it to the joint partyroom.
Mr Fang said the move would unfairly target regional motorists.
“This policy decision puts the burden squarely on rural and regional motorists who will be disproportionately targeted given the longer distances and higher speed limits in the bush,” he said.
The Opposition is also critical, with Labor’s roads spokesman John Graham saying the move appears to be about revenue raising.
“This is announced during budget week because it’s budget measure,” he said.
“We know that fine revenue will leap by about a third as a result of this single measure. There’s a risk here that drivers simply see it as revenue raising.”
Mr Fang agreed that drivers would lose confidence in the process as a result of the change.
“People need to have confidence in the system that if they speed they would have been given a warning, and they’ve still done it anyway and they got the ticket,” he said.
But the Regional Roads Minister and Nationals MP Paul Toole said the removal of the warning signs will permanently change change driver behaviour.
Mr Toole says it was about changing the misconception there was a safe way of speeding.
“It only takes a split second, a split second, to put your life at risk and other motorists lives at risk,” he said.
Mr Fang said he was yet to speak to the Transport Minister or Nationals leader John Barilaro about his discontent.