• Germany's news in English

Ban on speed camera warnings 'outdated'

The Local · 19 Sep 2012, 09:52

Published: 19 Sep 2012 09:52 GMT+02:00

Politicians from Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union and their Free Democrat coalition partners are considering changing the law to allow the use of mobile apps and navigation systems equipped with the detectors, the Saarbrücker Zeitung newspaper said on Wednesday.

Germany has around 3,800 permanent speed cameras, which photograph speeding drivers and mail the car's owner a pricey ticket.

Most of them are installed at accident blackspots, Christian Democrat transport expert Thomas Jarzombek told the paper.

"It makes sense if as many people as possible, including out-of-towners, are made aware of the dangerous areas,” he said.

"We want to differentiate between traffic safety and a money-making racket," Jarzombeck said.

Free Democrat MP Oliver Luksic called the ban on radar warnings "outdated," and said Transport Minister Peter Ramsauer should look into the matter.

But not everyone agrees with allowing drivers to find out about speed cameras in advance.

Police union GdP chairman Bernhard Witthaut told public broadcaster ZDF speed enforcement cameras would continue to be posted in accident-prone areas and "in my opinion, those should not be announced."

The Saarbrücker Zeitung reported that a draft of the CDU and FDP proposal said that navigation devices should be permitted to inform drivers about speed cameras within a zone of about 500 metres.

Story continues below…

"Thus, the particular area in which the driver exercises extreme caution is expanded," the draft said.

The Local/DAPD/sh

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

12:25 September 19, 2012 by lucksi
Sooo, police are having a problem with the fact that motorists slow down in dangerous areas if they are warned that maybe there is a speed trap?

Seriously? They actually said that? Out loud?

Yes, this isn't about making money AT ALL.
12:34 September 19, 2012 by Simon_Kellett
> police are having a problem with the fact that motorists slow down in dangerous areas

The problem is that it implies they are breaking the law *before* entering the dangerous areas.

Or are you saying it is OK the break the speeding laws if you feel like it? Then someone else maybe feels it is OK to break the laws on property and steals your car. Is that OK?
12:46 September 19, 2012 by Englishted

Why does it imply they are breaking the law before being in the "dangerous area"

I have seen many cameras hidden just as you enter a say 30 zone when before the sign it was 60 .

The police are saying that the "dangerous areas" are a surprise for non locals otherwise where is the problem with per-warning apart from reduced police coffers.
12:57 September 19, 2012 by zeddriver

What a bogus argument. Should the police have a visible presence at a football match? Or should they only come to the stadium after there is trouble. No! Merely having the knowledge that there are police about. Preemptively causes cooler heads to prevail.

The driver notification of a speed camera has the same effect as if there were a police car sitting beside the road at a high accident spot.

The police said very clearly that THE reason they put speed cams at certain spots. Was to prevent accidents. If people are prompted to slow down because their SatNav beeps at them. Then I'd say job done.

And there are in fact many places where their are clearly speed traps. Try A5 south from Frankfurt near Darmstadt. Highway speed goes from 130 to 100 there is a speed cam AT the 100 sign. Within 100 metres the speed goes back to 130, And a 100 metres later it goes to unrestricted. I call that revenue enhancement.
14:04 September 19, 2012 by antistar
If they only slow down when the satnav beeps at them, they are breaking the law already. Then obviously job NOT done, because the job of the police is to stop people breaking the law. Calling cameras revenue collectors is the bogus argument: If people didn't break the law, there would be no additional revenues to collect.

Should we follow the same logic at airports, and let terrorists know when they are going to get a "random" search before they enter security? Should we let them know which flights will have armed air marshals aboard? I mean are these random searches meant to reduce risk only on certain flights, or to reduce risk overall? Is driving over the speed limit not also dangerous outside of accident black spots?
14:57 September 19, 2012 by raandy
Radar detectors are now almost impossible to discover and work very well against the 'blitz" sure has saved me a lot of bußgeld
19:38 September 19, 2012 by Englishted
@ antistar

"If they only slow down when the satnav beeps at them, they are breaking the law already. "

No as it is normal here to have a speed trap just after a lower speed sign,so therefore if the sat warns you 500m before you were not in the slower zone so were not breaking the law.

In the U.K. they are taking cameras out as statistics (I know) show that they tend to cause many accidents as people slam on the brakes when they see them automatically regardless of the consequences .
21:09 September 19, 2012 by antistar
The speed limit starts at the sign. It's there to warn you to slow down. It's not a sign that says "start slowing own after the sign". If you are going too fast after the sign, you are breaking the law.

If you are not breaking the law when the camera flashes you, then there is a problem with the camera's location and that should be fixed. That's not an argument to let everyone know when they might be caught for speeding.
00:34 September 20, 2012 by jg.
@antistar You are missing the point. The point of speed limits is road safety, not catching and punishing speeding drivers or making money. If drivers slow down at an accident blackspots because they are aware of speed trap locations then the result should be fewer accidents, injuries and fatalities and the speed traps will have achieved the desired goal.

Taking this further, it is quite cheap to have many brightly painted speed trap boxes but with only a few of them actually containing the expensive innards.
01:36 September 20, 2012 by antistar
I'm not missing the point, I just don't agree with it. If nobody broke the law, there would be no money to collect. The point of speed cameras is not to make accident blackspots safer, it is to make all roads safer. If you know where the cameras are then they will only make those places safer. Why would you want only certain roads to be safer and not all roads?

As I said before: It's the same at airports. If it was known which flights air marshals were on, then you would only improve safety on those flights. All other flights would not gain any benefit. The point of not letting lawbreakers know when they will be caught is to keep them from breaking the law at any time, not just in certain places.
02:24 September 20, 2012 by mike_1983

there are speed cameras on every corner with no warning signs.... and now the government sees them as a licence to print money with more and more every year and the fine increasing every year!

once the government had become reliant on this revenue there will be no turning back!
07:12 September 20, 2012 by ChrisRea
@ antistar #10

"The point of speed cameras is not to make accident blackspots safer, it is to make all roads safer." - right, that's why "most of them are installed at accident blackspots" (quote from the article). If their point is to catch as many speeding drivers (so that to increase the safety of all roads), why don't they put the majority of them where they have more chances to catch a large number of drivers? Hmm, maybe we should reconsider the idea of focusing on losing less human lives.
12:08 September 20, 2012 by BobbyBaxter
MOST speed cameras are to make revenue NOT save lives. Fact. End of.

Anyone who disagrees is mentally deficient. Fact.

Another example - if a child was killed in front of a school and the culprit was caught speeding by a well HIDDEN camera - which is ALWAYS the case, surely that life would have been saved had that very same person seen a big yellow speed camera beforehand or had a speed detector radar.

It should be about prevention not punishment/making money.
14:02 September 20, 2012 by antistar
Arguing that speed cameras are only for collecting revenue is a canard. Even if it is true, it doesn't mean the location of speed cameras should be known to lawbreakers. If you have a problem with where the money goes, you should be arguing that the revenues should be diverted to some deserving cause, like road accident victims.

The only argument here is whether they are effective, and whether revealing their location to lawbreakers will make them more effective. If you think that, then logically we should also list every plane that has an air marshal on so that other kinds of lawbreakers know where they will get caught.
17:52 September 20, 2012 by Englishted
@ antistar

I can cut the numbers down for you there are NO air marshals on European flights.
09:55 September 21, 2012 by Triston131
Speed cameras and by extension, red light cameras, aren't popular. Granted, individuals who get ticketed by them generally have earned it by ignoring the law. However, that hasn't kept them from resenting the presence of the machines, which has led to numerous occurrences of speed camera vandalism. Have you been in the market to sell or buy a new or used truck? If this relates to you, learn more on our websites at Gus Johnson cars! Want to know find out more about Gus Johnson Ford? Check out this.
Today's headlines
Train evacuated as passenger flips out during ticket check
Police at the scene in Leipzig. Photo: DPA

A regional train was evacuated in Leipzig on Wednesday after a passenger became aggressive during a ticket inspection.

Man arrested in Wuppertal as part of Spanish Isis raids
Police detain the suspect in Wuppertal. Photo: DPA

Police have arrested five suspected members of an Isis cell in Spain, Belgium and Germany that spread propaganda for the group online, the Spanish interior ministry said Wednesday.

Germans cut home energy usage by six percent in a year
Hamburg at night. Photo: DPA

The Energiewende is the German government's ambitious policy of drastically reducing carbon emissions. New figures show one remarkable success.

Merkel party MP under fire for using Nazi propaganda term
Bettina Kudla. Photo: Büro Bettina Kudla MdB/DPA.

A member of Angela Merkel's conservative CDU party is in hot water after tweeting over the weekend a Nazi propaganda term in her criticism of the country’s refugee policies.

Govt denies planning bailout for troubled Deutsche Bank
Photo: DPA

Germany's finance ministry on Wednesday said the government was "not preparing rescue plans" for Deutsche Bank, denying a newspaper report that state aid was being considered for the embattled lender.

Munich at high risk of housing bubble: report
A view of Munich. Photo: Pexels.com

Considering buying property in Munich? This report might make you think twice.

After fatal hail storm, south Germany set to see sun
The hail storm in Baden-Württemberg on Monday night left the streets looking like a winter landscape. Photo: DPA.

A hail storm in southwest Germany on Monday night led to the death of one woman, but forecasters predict a bit more sun in the days to come.

Police shoot dead father who attacked daughter's abuser
Police at the scene of the shooting in Berlin. Photo: DPA.

Berlin police on Tuesday night shot and killed the father of a young girl at a refugee home as he tried to attack a man who allegedly sexually abused his daughter.

TV celebrity criticized for claiming 70 kg is overweight
Sophie Thomalla. Photo: DPA

Model Sophie Thomalla claimed that promoting models who weigh over 70 kg sets as dangerous an example as skinny supermodels.

UK files show how Spanish spy tricked Nazis over D-Day
Photo: DPA

Secret files released in Britain Wednesday shed new light on how a Spaniard dubbed the greatest double agent of World War II tricked Germany with false intelligence about the D-Day Normandy landings.

Sponsored Article
The Inner Circle: the secret to dating in Berlin
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Sponsored Article
Retiring abroad: ensuring your health is covered
Seven great reasons to stay in Germany this September
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Sponsored Article
The Inner Circle: the secret to dating in Berlin
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
Germany's 17 Olympic gold medals in pictures
14 facts you never knew about the Brandenburg Gate
Ten times Germans proved they really, really love beer
Six things you need to know when moving to Germany
These 10 little-known German towns are a must see
German scientists prove birds can sleep while flying
London v. Berlin: Which is better for startups?
13 mortifying mistakes German learners always make
Enter if you dare: Berlin's best abandoned haunts
10 rookie errors all Brits make when they arrive in Germany
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd