I stand before you, the magistrate, representing myself, Jake Cassidy. I have been a victim of injustice as I have recently received a fine for going one kilometre over the speed limit. I was in my company car going on a delivery when a cop car behind me pulled me over and said I was speeding. The Police officer admitted himself that he measured my speed by driving behind me, which is unfair because the police officer didn’t use a speed gun to measure my speed and had no proof that I was speeding. I beg that you reconsider fining me $146 and 1 demerit point for a ‘crime’ that you have no proof of.
During my argument with the Police officer who pulled me over, he admitted that this fine was a case of ‘revenue raising’, which means that Police Officers no longer care about road safety, they just want to find innocent people and fine them for ridiculous reasons. Hidden speed cameras are increasing everywhere to try to catch people speeding, and ever since they increased the amount of them, there has been a 46% increase of fines in the past 3 years. This is due to revenue raising, the same reason that I was pulled over for. Mr Tim Mander, the MP of Everton, Brisbane, said that “If the LNP wins the next election we will completely get rid of all covert speed cameras in Queensland. The LNP will sign all speed cameras, we will get rid of covert cameras and Labors revenue raising.” Even the LNP consider if this revenue raising is necessary and want to stop it as soon as they can. In 2017, the amount of revenue raised was $160.6 million in Queensland, most by speed camera fines. I find it unjust that the police care more about fining people for revenue, than saving lives from speeding cars and bikes. On the official Police website, when asked what is the speed tolerance?, it states that To ensure a defacto speed limit is not created, this information cannot be released.
You cannot say that going 1 kilometre over the speed limit is dangerous, because while driving, maintaining a safe position in your lane on the road is more important than checking the speedometer every few seconds. Out of a survey from 17 students from a year 11 English class at Dakabin State High School, every single student voted that it is ridiculous that police are fining people for 1km/h over the speed limit! Besides from the fact that there was no proof that I did go over by 1km, there is too many different factors that must be considered that prevent drivers from maintaining the perfect speed on, or below the limit. For example, drivers in manual cars must constantly change gears while driving to increase or decrease speed for different area limits. Everyone can accidently go over the speed limit, it doesnt mean that that persons driving is unsafe when there are so many things you must do at once like changing gears as I just stated, watching the cars around you, looking out for pedestrians and cyclists, and lets be honest, theres always that one passenger in your car that always distracts you with constant babbling. There are also other small things that can distract people from checking and maintaining the right speed, such as indicating, navigating the roads to find a destination, checking the fuel gage and looking for places to fill up on fuel, and driving to the conditions with the sun in your eyes; e.g. having to constantly move the sun visor up and down after changing directions, and having shades on can limit your view, which can affect you seeing the needle in the place of your speed accurately. What is next? Fines for drinking water? Fines for breathing? How about sneezing or coughing? This proves that the fines are getting ridiculous and are not actually keeping drivers safe on the roads.
Tyre sizes vary in every car, which changes the distance covered by one rotation of the wheel, so if the speedometer isnt right to the tyres, the speed that it reads is inaccurate. Speed odometers, if they arent adjusted according to the tyre condition and size, can be wrong for long periods of time. If tyres have recently been changed, or tyres are considerably worn, the speedometer must be checked, and it is imperative that the driver is aware of this to accommodate for the different size or condition of tyres. On the day of this supposed crime, my car was new, with new tyres, and the speedometer was at manufacturer specification. There was no way that my speedometer was incorrect within manufacturers limits. My speedometer was reading 60km/h, which means that I wasnt, in fact, speeding. The Police Officer reported that he had to speed up 1km/h to catch up to me, but this is a wrong estimation of my speed. This is silly, because if two cars are moving at the same speed, one behind the other, the 2nd car is never going to catch up. More speed would be required to catch up to the first car, which is where the Police Officer is in the wrong. Furthermore, this indicates that the Police Officer to catch up, must operate his vehicle in an unsafe manner if going faster is truly dangerous, and then endangers both vehicles by making both vehicles stop onto the side of the road. Upon exiting the vehicle, he endangers himself. By putting on his flashing lights when pulling someone over, this causes a distraction for all the cars around them.
This is a political inequity, as it is a decision made by the political bodies. I feel this $146 fine and removal of 1 demerit point for driving 1km/h over is unnecessary as I wasnt speeding. This fine was given to me from a Police Officer who pulled me over under a false belief that I was speeding, when he was the one speeding to catch up to me. He admitted that the fine was a case of revenue raising, which isnt intended to protect other drivers on the road from my supposed unsafe driving. Even if I did speed by 1km/h, there are many distractions that would prevent me from keeping my speed under control, such as watching the other drivers around me, maintaining my position in my lane on the road, indicating, looking out for cyclists or bikes, watching for pedestrians, and changing gears. Are you going to let people get fined for changing gears and not checking our speed for a few seconds? What about for looking around to watch that no pedestrians run out onto the road? I hope I changed your mind on this unfair fine!