Study: Australian Motorists Fear Fines More Than Death Photo:
Mike Stevens | Dec, 16 2010 | 6 Comments

A new study by the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) has revealed that speeding motorists are more concerned with the risk of being caught speeding than of being involved in a fatal accident.

Surveying 800 motorists in Queensland, QUT's Dr Judy Fleiter said that speeding drivers spend more time watching for cameras than for potential dangers, believing "they 'know' how to evade detection."

The study also asked motorists what speeds they drive at in a 60km/h zone, with responses varying from 40km/h to 100km/h. Similarly, speeds in 100km/h zones varied from 60km/h to 145km/h.

"The study found that many drivers admitted slowing down at known or anticipated speed camera locations and that some actively seek information from other drivers about camera locations, particularly when travelling on new or unfamiliar roads," Ms Fleiter said.

"But the problem with drivers taking a calculated risk, is that they are calculating the risk of getting caught and not the risk of getting hurt."

Ms Fleiter said that the study showed that too many drivers are unaware of the factors involved in a high-speed incident, such as reaction time, stopping distance and impact forces.

"There seemed to be a lack of understanding that at high speeds, many road crashes are not survivable, no matter who is driving, how skilled that driver may be, and how good the vehicle is they are driving," she said.

It may be a common argument that with new technology comes a greater capacity for safe driving at higher speeds, however Ms Fleiter is adamant: "there is no such thing as safe speeding."

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