Victoria Police Top Cop Open To Debate On Double Demerit Points

double-demerits

As the national road toll for the holiday season rises to 20, Victoria Police Superintendent Michael Grainger says that hitting drivers who break the law with double demerit points should be on the table to reduce road carnage in Victoria.

Such ‘double trouble’ could see some motorists banished from our roads after copping just two fines or being caught out by a combined speed and red light camera.

Full licence holders can accumulate 12 demerit points over three years.

Those speeding by 10-25km/h or running red lights currently incur three points; those speeding by 35-45km/h or talking on a mobile phone, four points; and drink-drivers and those speeding by more than 45km/h, eight points.

Police predict the road toll will reach 257, eclipsing last year’s, which was also higher than the year before.

Source: Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics
Source: Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics

Although the number of fatalities have steadily decreased across Australia, 254 lives have been lost on Victorian roads, compared with 247 at the same time last year – a 2.8% increase.

In some states, during the festive season and on long weekends, motorists caught breaking road laws incur double demerit points.

double-demerits-nsw

Victoria Police’s Road Policing Strategy Division Superintendent Michael Grainger said previous advice to the force had been that double demerit points did not deliver a “real road safety benefit”.

But he said the debate needed to go back to the public.

“We have certainly considered double demerits in the past, and we are certainly open to anything that will encourage a discussion that will have an impact on our road trauma,” Supt Grainger told the Herald Sun.

“So we are open to new ideas, new technologies, a whole range of new approaches to try and reduce our trauma to zero — that’s what we all aspire to. We encourage any public debate that will in some way positively impact the terrible trauma we see on our roads on a daily basis.”

VicRoads vehicle and road use policy director Robyn Seymour said it was unclear whether it was double demerit periods or concentrated and highly visible policing that led to a reduction in crashes in other states.

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