Unusual new speed camera feature sparks outrage: 'Isn't it ironic'

New mobile speed cameras will roll out across Queensland next month but the state-of-the-art design has some road users furious.

The portable solar-powered cameras will be trialled until April 2024, and will be deployed at roadside worksites and school zones across the state.

Their aim is to protect roadside workers from speeding drivers, as well as school children from being hit and killed.

But the unusual design, criticised for being unrecognisable by passing drivers, is what's caused a stir on Facebook. Many motorist are accusing the Queensland government of revenue raising.

The new speed camera next to a road and speed sign.
The state-of the-art cameras are set to be rolled out next month. Source: Transport and Main Roads Queensland

Queensland drivers warned of new speed cameras

The cameras that'll be used on "high-risk roadworks sites" were specifically designed and built to sit on top of a mobile platform that can be easily moved around the worksite.

In a photo shared on Facebook by Transport and Main Roads Queensland, the camera appears to sit on top of a heavy piece of machinery and drivers are likely to have no idea what they are.

At school zones, the cameras will be installed at stationary positions and attached to speed signs.

"Expect to see more portable speed cameras at school zones and high-risk roadworks sites across Queensland over the coming months," Transport and Main Roads Queensland warned.

Solar-panel mobile speed cameras in Queensland
The Queensland mobile speed cameras are designed to be moved around and can appear anywhere, anytime at school zones or worksites. Source: Transport and Main Roads Queensland

Road users' furious reaction

A heated debate erupted in the comments of the post with many slamming the idea, but others thought it was "fantastic".

"Isn't it ironic that they look like ATM machines," one person pondered.

"Brisbane must need funding for another tunnel," another said.

Some argued speed cameras "don't save lives" and that fixing the roads or more police presence would be much better alternatives.

"How does getting a fine 2 weeks later save [lives]?" one said.

'Cameras can be anywhere, at any time'

Transport and Main Roads Queensland responded to criticism in the comments and said "speeding's one of the leading causes of fatalities and serious injuries on our roads."

It said it represented "almost 30 per cent of road fatalities last year", with 74 fatalities due to crashes involving speeding motorists.

"We make no apology for protecting our most vulnerable road user groups, being school children and roadworkers," it wrote.

"Obviously that won't worry you if you drive within the speed limit, which is the best way to look after vulnerable road users and your own driving record."

cars driving on Queensland road
People are divided with many saying it's just another revenue-raising ploy. Source: Transport and Main Roads Queensland

Queensland Police Superintendent Janelle Andrews said the cameras were simply targeting those doing the wrong thing, it's been reported.

"These new speed cameras force drivers to slow down in order to avoid a fine or incur demerit points," she said.

"No one wants to carry the guilt of the death or injury of a child walking to or from school, or a roadworker simply carrying out their job. There is no penalty for doing the right thing."

Transport Minister Mark Bailey said "they can be anywhere, at any time, in any school zone or construction site anywhere in the state," as he urged people to "drive safely", Nine News reported

Portable cameras 'great idea', some say

Some praised the introduction of the new cameras, with one saying it's the "best tax ever."

"One you can choose not to have to pay. Just don’t speed," they said.

"Hopefully this might smarten the attitude up of some of those motorists, great idea," another added.

One person said they hoped the revenue earned would be "redirected to highways".

Transport and Main Roads Queensland said the "money collected from camera fines is used to run Queensland's Camera Detected Offence Program and to fund important road safety initiatives".

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