More than $10.5 million worth of fines have been issued to motorists in the past 18 months for offences captured by the Hunter's speed and red-light cameras.
The Newcastle Herald can reveal the region's 23 fixed cameras recorded 41,801 offences in the 18 months to the end of September, raking in an average $19,324 per day in fines revenue.
The number of offences and revenue windfall was significantly boosted by a single speed camera on one of Newcastle's main arterial roads, which netted more than $2.7 million alone.
The eastbound speed camera on Griffiths Road at Lambton caught 15,415 motorists after the road's speed limit was reduced by 10km/h in mid-March last year.
The limit on Griffiths Road, Newcastle Road and Thomas Street, spanning Wallsend to Hamilton, was reduced from 70 km/h to 60 km/h.
The Herald reported last October how the change led to a 544 per cent rise in offences recorded by two red-light speed cameras between April and September last year compared to the same period the year prior.
But an analysis of Revenue NSW data shows that trend has continued, with thousands of motorists still being stung at the two locations.
In the 18 months to the end of September, the westbound speed camera on Thomas Street at Wallsend recorded 3412 offences worth $655,874. The red-light camera recorded 1693 offences worth $787,207 - the most of the region's seven red-light cameras.
The Thomas Street and Griffiths Road cameras, located only 5.7 km apart, accounted for more than $4.3 million of the $10.5 million in fines revenue raised from the Hunter's 23 cameras.
Collectively the two sites have been raking in, on average, about $7500 per day.
Wallsend MP Sonia Hornery said the reduction had been a "complete failure"
"The number of fines being issued has gone through the roof and the government are just happy to sit back and let it happen," she said.
"The excuse used was the high number of low-speed crashes. So far from the evidence I have seen, nothing has changed. The number of crashes hasn't changed."
READ MORE: Release data on speed limit changes: Hornery
Ms Hornery said she had put questions to Roads Minister Andrew Constance this week asking if any of the $4.3 million raised by the cameras was being spent on "further educating drivers about the 60km/h speed zone".
"It seems to me that they are just happy to sit back and let the cash pile up instead of looking at being proactive and working to reduce the number of speeding drivers," she said. "The minister needs to be clear, is it revenue raising or do they actually want to stop drivers speeding?
"Given the complete failure of this exercise, I have asked the minister to review the speed limit with the view to putting it back to 70km/h in certain sections."
Transport for NSW said monthly speeding offences had been decreasing since the speed limit change. It cited data suggesting casualty crash rates had fallen.
In the five-years to March 2018, there were 88 casualty crashes on the 7.3km length of Newcastle Road, Griffiths Road and Thomas Street, an average of 37.6 per year.
But in the year after the change, preliminary data showed there were 21 casualty crashes, which represented a 44 per cent drop on the yearly average.
Centre for Road Safety executive director Bernard Carlon said speeding contributed to about 140 deaths and 4000 injuries each year. He said the government made no apology for the fines handed out as fixed cameras reduced fatalities.
"We know that speed cameras work to slow drivers down, reduce the number and severity of crashes, and save lives," he said. "This has been demonstrated both in NSW and worldwide.
"The NSW government's 2018 speed camera review found that there has been an 80 per cent reduction in fatalities at fixed speed camera locations, and a 74 per cent reduction in fatalities at red-light speed camera locations.
"Our aim is to slow drivers down, not fine them - which is why all speed camera locations in NSW, including the red light speed cameras in the Newcastle region, are clearly signposted."
Transport for NSW did not respond to a question about the signage adequacy or localised pro-active measures it had implemented.
"Drivers have a responsibility to follow the road rules. This includes sticking to the speed limit regardless of the time of day, locations of speed cameras or the [road] gradient," Mr Carlon said.
"Every cent from speed camera revenue goes into the Community Road Safety Fund, which is used to fund important safety programs such as school zone flashing lights, road safety upgrades and high visibility police."
Other notable locations where motorists are being stung include the Pacific Highway school zone at Gateshead and on Charlestown Road in Charlestown.
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