MOTORISTS who speed past stationary trams will be caught on camera — and could eventually receive fines and demerit points for it. Yarra Trams is testing still and video cameras on two trams, as it tries to reduce pedestrian accidents and improve driver behaviour.
Two B-class trams have each been fitted with eight cameras. Some are on the front of the tram, and others are fixed on the side and point to the rear. "What we are trying to do is detecting motorists who violate the road rules," Mr Cliche said.
"We are hoping to be able to, basically, photograph motorists who are passing stationary trams, and motorists who are blocking tram fairways."
The trams are based at the West Preston depot, and have been used on route 112 to Fitzroy Street, St Kilda.
But if the trial succeeds, it will open the way for the police and the department to lobby the State Government to introduce legislation for fines.
Mr Cliche said trams were often at the mercy of other road vehicles during heavy traffic, with most of the network sharing road space.
"Video will be used to reinforce the fact that something has been done, and the still will take a photograph of a numberplate, much like the speed cameras today," he said.
It the manual operation is successful, it will have a six-week trial on automatic.
Cameras on the tram will be able to detect motorists speeding past. Yarra Trams has reported about 1000 incidents involving trams and other road users, including pedestrians, every year — more than three a day