Concerns over accuracy of Australia's new phone-spotting cameras

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Mon, 2 Dec 2019, 4:36PM
The cameras can see if you are holding a phone while driving. (Photo / Getty)

Concerns over accuracy of Australia's new phone-spotting cameras

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Mon, 2 Dec 2019, 4:36PM

The Australian state of New South Wales has rolled out a new camera system, designed to catch drivers using cell phones behind the wheel.

Over the next three years, 45 portable cameras are being set up across the state, in unknown locations and without warning signs.

A trial earlier this year caught more than 100,000 drivers illegally using a phone at the wheel.

Lawyer Michal Mantaj told Heather du Plessis-Allan he suspects hundreds of thousands of fines wil be issued.

"If only a small percentage of those people who receive a fine decide they want to challenge a fine in court, that couldl be thousands of extra cases every year."

Mantaj says there are also concerns about the cameras' ability to discriminate if people are holding a cell phone, as the law means people can be fined if there's 'an object' in their hand.

"For example, if you're exiting a carpark, you'll need a ticket to exit. People are entitled to have a sip of coffee or sandwich or bar of chocolate whilst driving."

Mantaj says it'll depend on the quality of the image taken as to how well someone with a chocolate bar will be able to argue their case.

 

 

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