While I agree that speeding should not be condoned, I disagree with the Traffic Police’s seemingly single-minded focus on this offence. Lately, it seems that all the authorities are concerned with is speeding – what about other potentially more dangerous offences?
Apart from speeding, there’s careless/dangerous driving, failing to give way to emergency vehicles and road hogging. These offences are just as bad, if not worse than speeding.
The authorities also say that speeding kills. Actually, it’s not speeding per se, but the impact in a car crash that can be fatal.
For example, let’s say that a driver is going at 80km/h on an expressway with a 90km/h speed limit. He is definitely not speeding. But what if said driver became distracted and failed to notice that the traffic in front of his vehicle suddenly came to a standstill?
He would end up crashing his car into stationary vehicles at 80km/h. The force from the impact would probably be fatal. At the very least, he would suffer grievous injuries. The point is, he would’ve been killed because he was not paying attention and not because he was driving too fast.
Road safety should not just be about catching drivers who speed. A more holistic approach, which tries to change the mentality of all road users, is the one that should be adopted.
Getting all road users to care about one another should be the main goal. Pedestrians shouldn’t always expect everyone else to stop for them. Motorcyclists and cyclists shouldn’t weave between cars just because they can. Drivers shouldn’t feel like the kings of the road simply because they pay more road tax.
Issuing summonses and demerit points will not address this larger issue. Neither will installing more speed cameras and deploying more officers. All of these are solutions that merely target the symptoms. The root cause of all these problems is selfishness. If we could find a way to eradicate that, the roads would become safer for everyone.