Road safety researchers, practitioners and advocates are disappointed and frustrated by the recent sharp rise in NSW road deaths. A staggering 227 lives were lost in the first six months of 2009, almost one-third greater than the same period last year.
After a long and relatively steady decline in road accident rates, this year has come as a rude shock. A recent round-table panel of road safety experts looked at the evidence and concluded that an increase in speeding has been a key cause.
Yet when experts recommend that NSW should immediately introduce more safety speed cameras - particularly covert mobile cameras - nervous politicians flinch from doing so, writes Professor Raphael Grzebieta in an opinion piece published in the Sydney Morning Herald.
"Those arguing against the introduction of more safety speed cameras are effectively saying they want the right to speed and not get caught. It is an extraordinary and unsupportable position," said Professor Grzebieta, Chair of Road Safety at UNSW's Injury Risk Management Research Centre.
"The choice is now simple: more mobile safety speed cameras or more deaths and road carnage. Unless we take these necessary steps a minority of road users will continue to speed, believing the chances of detection are low. We would not stand back meekly if a small group of law-breakers thought they could get away with randomly killing and wounding people with guns - speeding drivers are no better and they merit no more tolerance."
Read Professor Grzebieta's full opinion piece at the Faculty of Science news site.
Media contact: Bob Beale, Faculty of Science | 0411 705 435 | firstname.lastname@example.org