Wet-film Gatsos are running short of film following a U-turn over their future use
22 June 2011

Britain’s wet-film Gatso speed cameras are running short of film thanks to a U-turn on the decision to switch off the devices.

Last summer the government cut spending on road safety by £38 million, so many local authorities vowed to axe speed cameras. Supplies of film have dwindled since then because the major supplier, Fujifilm, anticipating lower demand, cancelled an order for rolls of 35mm stock from Japan.

Two sources have told Autocar that the Gatso film will be in short supply until September and that camera operations are being hampered as a result.

However, a spokesman for Fujifilm said the supply chain will be back to normal at the end of June. “It’s just a supply and demand thing,” he said. “We toned down our orders, but the police have been ordering as usual, so we are air-freighting supplies to clear the backlog.”

At least 6000 speed cameras are thought to be operational in the UK. The bulk are digital, but around a tenth of them still use wet film.

Julian Rendell

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