Under new government rules in the UK, transport authorities in all counties are required to publish speed camera statistics. The county of Lancashire is one of the first to do so, and the locals are up in arms about the results.
It turns out that three speed cameras alone in the city of Preston has netted over £18,000 in fines, but accidents have actually increased.
The chairman of the Association of British Drivers Brain Gregory was clearly annoyed when he told the Lancashire Evening Post,
“Not only is it scandalous that the cameras where casualties have increased have been kept in operation for many years, it is even more disturbing that the authorities have hidden this data and authorised continued operation while being in possession of this knowledge. The government should get a grip and insist that those responsible for such malpractice in all regions are removed from public service with immediate effect.”
Perhaps this episode should be a heads up for Roads and Traffic authorities in Australia to examine the results of all the so called ‘Safety cameras’ in operation here for the purposes of discovering the effectiveness of these devices in reducing trauma and congestion on our roads.
Of course, traffic accidents in general, have fallen across the UK and in Australia over the last five years, but that’s due to a combination of factors including, more advanced vehicle safety systems and other traffic management measures, making it difficult to assess the overall effectiveness of speed cameras.
Are speed (sorry, ‘Safety’) cameras necessary, or are they merely automatic revenue collection boxes that are generally placed on straight stretches of road to catch us out?