Northern Territory now has 300km of unrestricted speed limits

Northern Territory unrestricted speed limit

THE Northern Territory now has 300-kilometers of unrestricted highway speed-limits after the government approved new changes overnight.

A further 60-kilometre stretch of the Stuart Highway north of Alice Springs will be free of speed limits, allowing those behind the wheel to drive to the conditions.

Northern Territory Chief Minister Adam Giles says there have been upgrades to the condition of the highway to compliment the speed limit changes.

“Pretty much between Alice Springs and Ali Curung now you will be able to see open speed limits,” he said.

“Not only are we widening and strengthening the road we’re improving things such as righting the dips in the roads and putting better signage on the roads and that’s [making it] safer for all drivers.”

Bentley -continental -GT-driving -on -Stuart -Highway -NT-rearThe upgrades took five months to complete at a cost of $3.1million.

The Northern Territory government plans to extend open speed limits further – pending more upgrades – and intends to have unrestricted highway as far as Katherine.

This is the third time the unrestricted section has been extended since it was re-introduced in 2014 as a trial.

Harold Scruby, chief executive officer of the taxpayer-funded Pedestrian Council of Australia, has been an outspoken advocate against unrestricted speed limits in the Northern Territory, calling those behind the decision to lift limits “rednecks”.

When talking to Scruby regarding his complaint against Bentley’s now banned film which showed a Bentley Continental GT Speed clocking 330km/h on a closed stretch of the Stuart Highway, Wheels asked if he thought his views represented the majority of Australians.

Bentley -continental -GT-driving -on -Stuart -Highway -NT-aerial -view“I am not sure exactly what percentage of the population the Northern Territory represents, but there are 25-million people in Australia,” he replied.

“I think there are between 200,000 and 300,000 in the Northern Territory*.”

“It is the only state or territory where the speed limit is over 110km/h. Isn’t that a fair reflection?

“If we elect our governments democratically, and if they decided that the maximum speed limit in Australia should be 110km/h, then the great minority, the very, very small minority of Australians agree with [unrestricted sections of highway].

“There is no other jurisdiction in Australia where you can go over 110km/h

“That means out of [a population of] 25 million, 24,800,000 people live in democracies where they have agreed that the speed limit shouldn’t be higher than 110km/h.”

Bentley -continental -GT-driving -on -Stuart -Highway -NT-afternoon -sunWheels asked Mr Scruby if he agreed that the contention that travelling at unrestricted speeds could be safe with the proper precautions in place, such a professionally-accredited driver at the wheel and on a closed road. In response, he reiterated his belief that speeds in excess of those legally allowed on most Australian highways are lethally dangerous – regardless of the circumstances.

 “Why do you think that every state and territory other than these rednecks in the Northern Territory have decreed that the maximum speed should be 110km/h? Why do you think that?”

*The population of the Northern Territory is recorded at 243,700 as of 2014 (Source: ABS).

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  • Isn't it funny how "Wheels" did an edition where they deliberately sped from Melbourne to Sydney, and in fact stated that doing so was safe, and called for a raising of the speed limit If you haven't read the article, they did 130 KM/H for the majority of the distance ( So, some how doing 130 KM/H was safe back then but doing over 110 km/h is now very dangerous.
  • Harold scruby if you cant handle a speed over 110kmh thats fine avoid those roads or hand your license in. Increased speed means people are getting to their Destination quicker and those long stretches of road lead to fatigue. So this may actually save lives by reducing time traveled on the road therefor reducing fatigue.
  • @Garlo where? i'm going....
  • I was lucky enough to start driving in the years before there was an open road speed limit and we didn't all die when we went over 70MPH(just over 110kmh). Police had to prove your speed was dangerous!. Mister Screwball is away with the fairies if he thinks the general population had any say in the speed limits. What we really need is more information,instruction and training for all drivers,particularly advanced training skills in vehicle control. Not just Slow down,Slow down,Slow down!. Look at the rest of the world.
  • As someone who has driven that road a few times I can tell you opening the speed limits saves lives !! One lane is as wide as two anywhere else in oz, and 100's of kilometres of straight boring road stuck at 110kmh literally puts you to sleep. When I drove it I was lucky enough to drive when it was open basically from Mount Isa to 3-Ways... Did I do 200kmh ?? no.. I did about 150kmh where the car was quite happy... Even overtook a couple of cops who just waved me through. This made the trip take about 3 hours (for that section) instead of 5... and trust me that made a difference for the stop at night. This guy is a total moron who I am willing to bet has NEVER driven in the northern territory. Speed doesn't kill.. idiots who can't drive a car properly do.
  • Full credit to whomever it was that interviewed Screwball. I know I would not have the restraint to not beat him in the face of such arrogant, self-righteous, lunacy. People need to be clear on this freak; the statistics aren't really what he's speaking from. No, his outrage (so much outrage) comes from the nonchalant disregard and rejecting his blind opinions are met with. You could show him how road deaths in the NT peaked when speed limits were introduced and were lower before and after limits were in place and he'd just go all flat-earther on you, insisting with unimpeachable self-certainty that everyone not agreeing with him is wrong. The man is symbolic of everything that's wrong with road safety policy in this country and he should be disregarded suitably.
  • Ummm... isn't there areas in NSW with 120 km/h speed zones?
  • "Why do all states and territories except NT have 110km/h speed limits?" Well Scrubby, it's kinda hard to raise revenue when you can't book people for speeding.
  • Scruby needs to be scrubbed out. The voice of one who has a poor driving record does not represent anything but his own guilt.
  • Forgot to add, that at his age he's probably one of those caravan towing nomads doing 70 out on the open highway. Now that is lethal - in all states!
  • (Said in Shaggy's voice) "Like Scruby Doo, the only pedestrians out here are dead ones". Had to check my calendar to ensure it wasn't April 1st. The logic behind Scruby Doo's commentary is simply mind numbing.
  • Why do you even talk with Harold Scruby? Isn't the pedestrian council just him? Why don't you work on getting his funding pulled and foster something that works our way. Im sure all you motoring journo guys combined, have some "influence".