Speed-camera forewarnings have deterrence value

Contrary to what Mr Leng Kok Meng believes ("No need to warn motorists of speed cameras"; Forum Online, May 24), it is definitely not a waste of resources to forewarn motorists of the presence of speed cameras.

Speeding, as a cause of fatal accidents, is the prime factor, ahead of drink driving.

Most research has shown that just knowing of the presence of speed cameras alters driving habits favourably for most drivers, with fatal accidents decreasing statistically in accident-prone spots where cameras have been installed.

Many jurisdictions mandate that motorists must be pre-warned of the presence of these cameras, and that their physical existence must be signalled by loud and distinctive colours.

The rationale is that speed cameras are deterrence tools, alerting motorists not only of the penalty of excess speed, but of the potential of a death trap ahead for a reckless driver.

Furthermore, having unmarked cameras and not alerting motorists of their presence would give credence to the perception that speed cameras are revenue-generation devices rather than dissuasion appliances.

Most motorists would prefer ample notice to slow down ahead of a dangerous road. Sudden braking when one espies an unmarked and unforewarned speed camera causes more accidents and defeats the purpose of these surveillance devices.

Yik Keng Yeong (Dr)