Whenever the issueof speed cameras arises, you can be sure the mention of revenue will soon enter the conversation.

The state government quietly added two Maitland area roads to its list of mobile speed camera locations recently –Raymond Terrace Road at Millers Forest and Lindesay Street in East Maitland.

It means mobile speed cameras –those mounted in vehicles –could be parked on these roads from August 1.

Labor Maitland MP Jenny Aitchisontook aim at the government for not making a public announcement and giving motorists fair warning.

She also criticised the government for reducing funding for road safety while increasing initiatives that generate revenue.

Millers Forest resident Selby Green (pictured) suggested the government should instead conduct a serious review of speed limits on Raymond Terrace Road, while East Maitland man Steve Bourke said speed humps could be a useful alternative to cameras.

The bottom line is the death toll on NSW roads has significantly risen in the past year and the Hunter features several times in that list of calamities.

Something needs to be done.

According NSW Centre for Road Safety data published on August 15, the state’s road toll had risen by 21 per cent so far this calendar year, compared with the same period last year.

That means 43 more people have died on NSW roads between January 1 and August 15 this year (252) than January 1 to August 15, 2015.

Clearly something has to be done to address the issue of road safety.

However, the question is whether continuing triedand apparently ineffectivemethods is worthwhile.

In the past couple of years, there has been a strong push to warn motorists of the dangers of driving using a mobile phone, or being otherwise distracted, and the impact of fatigue.

High ranking highway patrol officials have frequently pointed out the contribution that these, as well as drugs and alcohol, have made to the death toll.

A broader discussion about road safety in the Hunter needs to be ongoing.Ultimately, effective measures need to be taken to reduce all unnecessarily risky behaviour on the road–not just speeding.

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