Stealth law gives cops extra power

Western Australia WA government lane filtering consultation paper and online survey traffic look stealth

Helmet cameras, GPS units, radar detectors and other devices could be ruled unlawful by Western Australia Police under a rule amendment that is being brought in by stealth, say critics.

Police Minister Michelle Roberts has added a section to the Impaired Driving and Penalties Bill that allows police to ban any “device” they deem fit.

Those devices could include helmet cameras, intercoms, radar detectors (legal only in WA), dashcams and even phones being used for sat nav or music.

Rather than police applying the law, it would make them creators of the law in a dangerous precedent for other states.

Stealth law

Motorcycle Riders Association of WA representative Dave Wright says the Minister is effectively trying to allow legislation by stealth without proper consideration or discussion by the voted Members of Parliament.

The issue was brought to light by the Australian Drivers Rights Association who is lobbying the Upper House to reject the amendment.

Association secretary Glen Secco says it was sneaky of the Minister to attach the section to the Bill.

“Problem is it’s an open ticket to be used at any time to ban whatever they want,” he says.

Glen believes it is primarily designed to outlaw radar detectors.speed camera radar speeding fines rich rich

“The Office of Road Safety keeps putting this forward and it’s been rejected by the government in 1998, 2003, 2006 and 2012,” he says.

“The office receives all its money from speeding fines and a lot of things they support is simply to increase their revenue from speed cameras.

“Motorists make mistakes and it’s not all speeding; driver inattention, misjudgement and distraction cause the majority of accidents and yet they just concentrate on speed.”

However, Glen says a lot of other devices could also be ruled illegal in a vehicle or on a rider.

“GoPros on a helmet also aren’t safe (from these laws),” he says.

“They may also decided that phones on a bike are not safe as they are a distraction.”

He is asking all WA motorists to visit their website, copy their letter and post it to their elected representative in an effort to reject the Bill amendment.

9 Comments

  1. This sounds to me like 1. They obviously want to raise more revenue, and 2. They don’t want the public to have any evidence to back themselves if required at a later date. This must be a blanket ban if passed. Ie: NO Driver or rider (police incl.) to have use of these devices.

  2. helmet cams from a motorcycle cop will have to be banned also… if that’s the case… u can’t have a one sided street so to speak… its either u allow it for all to use safely or banned it for all… if the cops can use a mobile phone while driving then it’s ok for the rest of us to use too… u can’t have a law that is being pushed as unsafe when the cops do it too… there needs to be justification for all road users not just the public… police need to stop pushing the idea that added car electronics are all bad, when there using how many gadgets in there police car/motorcycle on there own while driving… ? i see a lot of police officers driving without due care while concentrating on the job at hand… someone has to be responsible for the mess we all are in currently…

  3. Intercom as well… my wife and I ride together and enjoy talking on long trips. This is a direct and calculated attack on the motorcycle community and will quickly spread throughout Australia if it passes. All this under the guise of $afety…. oops I meant to type safety.

  4. Cheers Mark….My comment was more aimed at Frank who may have taken Glen’s GoPro comment out of context…
    Then again, I could be wrong… :/

  5. Hope you all have luck fighting this. We gave our police unit unfettered leeway with cellphone stuff, which sounded like an awesome idea at the time… But now we have people getting tickets for using phones when parked in “Acc” mode on their car, people getting ticketed for having their phones charging but not being used, phones being handled by passengers… The actual spirit of the law has been completely bastardized in order to reap as many tickets as possible.

  6. “The office receives all its money from speeding fines and a lot of things they support is simply to increase their revenue from speed cameras.

    “Motorists make mistakes and it’s not all speeding; driver inattention, misjudgement and distraction cause the majority of accidents and yet they just concentrate on speed.”

    However, Glen says a lot of other devices could also be ruled illegal in a vehicle or on a rider.

    “GoPros on a helmet also aren’t safe,” he says

    This while article was poorly written, explained and Glen is a drop kick. I really enjoy the website but this is a absolute puff piece.

      1. Re the comment: “GoPros on a helmet also aren’t safe,”
        I suspect Glen is not saying that GoPros aren’t safe as such…more that GoPros aren’t safe from these proposed law amendments… :/

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