Variance in speedometers creates concern for motorists

A MACKAY driver has questioned the legitimacy of booking a driver for minor speeding infringements because of the degree of variance in speedometers.

Tradesman and teacher Craig Van De Kaa raised the point after hearing of a Townsville case where a 21-year-old driver was fined for being one kilometre an hour over the speed limit this week.

Though in that case the fine was quickly cancelled, Mr Van De Kaa has questioned the right of police to book the driver as he said Australian Design Regulations allow for a 10% variance in accuracy.

He found out about the degree of variance first-hand as the speedo in his vehicle, a Great Wall, is inaccurate.

"I found out because I was driving to the speed limit and everyone was abusing me," Mr Van De Kaa said.

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Though he thought he was doing 60kmh, he discovered he was travelling at just 50kmh after monitoring his GPS and checking his speed against his wife's speed when she was travelling in a different car.

"I got sick of getting abused and not knowing whether I was speeding or not, so I asked the dealership to fix it," he said.

When he did he was shown the Australian Design Regulations, which allow for a 10% variance.

"So it's all well and good for police to calibrate their speed cameras, but if our car speedos aren't telling us the right speed how can they enforce it?"

A lower tolerance of speeding came into effect in June last year, when motorists were informed they would be fined for exceeding the speed limits by less, but the degree of tolerance has not been defined.

Mackay District Road Policing Unit officer-in-charge Senior Sergeant Richard Turner said it was QPS policy not to disclose speed tolerances as it was hoped everyone would keep to the posted speed limits.

"It is the vehicle owner's responsibility to ensure the accuracy of the vehicle speedometer and to travel within the speed limit," he said.

Mr Van De Kaa said he has had to find a happy medium when driving his vehicle.

"I sit on 65 and hope that it's right. That's a happy medium between when people abuse me and when I hope I won't get a fine," he said.

"But then you've got to think, when you jump in another vehicle, you don't sit on 64kmh out of habit."


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