Currently reading: 'Speed camera axe risks lives'
The AA has claimed buget cuts for speed cameras will put lives at risk

Scrapping speed cameras will put lives at risk, the AA has claimed.

The organisation has written a letter to transport secretary Philip Hammond about the issue, and has arranged to meet government officials.

The news comes after Oxfordshire County Council’s decision to turn off all 72 of its speed cameras after a budget cut of £600,000 – and other local authorities are set to follow suit, with further cuts expected to be implemented in the forthcoming Comprehensive Spending Review.

Steve Sutcliffe blog: Is this the end for speed cameras?

The government has also said that funding for new cameras will not be forthcoming.

According to the AA, there is a “void” in road safety policies, and it claims that motorists’ views are “not being reflected accurately” and that “ultimately, lives are at risk”.

Speed cameras have raked in roughly £100m a year in fines since their introduction in 1992, which has lead to arguments that the devices are nothing more than revenue-raisers for the government.

Ben Foulds

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n50pap 8 September 2010

Re: 'Speed camera axe risks lives'

Autocar wrote:
Scrapping speed cameras will put lives at risk, the AA has claimed.

The organisation has written a letter to transport secretary Philip Hammond about the issue, and has arranged to meet government officials.

That'll be the same Philip Hammond who condones people driving to their local pub, because they're responsible enough to know when they've had enough and go home reasonably sober and within the present drink-driving limit.

Speed cameras may not be perfect, but at least they stop nutters driving about at speeds which are, at best, suicidal. As for the AA wasting its time writing to Mr Hammond, I suppose it makes a change from their scaremongering about the cost of fuel leaping up and then it didn't.

The Transport Secretary should encourage responsible driving but, so far, he seems to imagine that drivers will abide by laws because they want to, not because they're told to. The mind-set among some motorists seems to be, if you don't agree with a law - just ignore it. The law about mobile phone usage is flouted constantly and seat belts are, apparently, for wimps.

At least if speed cameras stay in place, there's a chance that drivers who drive within the law won't suffer at the hands of those who don't.

MrTrilby 8 September 2010

Re: 'Speed camera axe risks lives'

Rich_uk - I agree with you, although personally I'm not sure there are enough A roads that are suitable for increased limits to be worth the bother. Given you'll still be stuck behind a queue of cars too scared to overtake lorries obeying their lower speed limit and I think the idea is a bit of a non starter. Nice idea in principle, but in practice I don't think it'll make any difference other than encourage stupid drivers to drive even faster.

Symanski wrote:

What I'd suggest to you is that you're making it too easy for cars to go past you. Ensure that you're visible enough, and walking towards traffic. If there's not enough room for them to pass, that you're out on the road more, then you'll see they will slow down.

I do already do that, more to keep the children on the inside of me, and so that I can see far enough ahead to spot the idiots (the quicker they travel, the less time I have to react. What tends to happen is that drivers expect you to move out of the way (where to I've no idea) and they continue at full speed until the last possible moment until they realise they're going to have hit the brakes or swerve. Which is intimidating when there's nothing coming the other way, and downright dangerous when there is. Especially in the wet - one incident last year had a MINI lock up in a puddle and skid to a halt 6 feet away from us. Resulting in a me having to extract two rather unimpressed kids from the hedge I'd just pushed them into. Even perfectly pleasant and nice people turn into complete unthinking idiots behind the wheel of a car.

That said, your advice is spot on - things just get even worse if you do make it too easy for cars to pass.

Symanski 7 September 2010

Re: 'Speed camera axe risks lives'

Maxycat wrote:
As I understand it fixed speed cameras were placed at the locations where deaths have occurred previously

Within a 20 mile radius of that place (not made up, this is from a good source).

Remember also that they're using cameras instead of fixing dangerous roads. I could tell you about the A77 in my area. Where it's been change to motorway and the crossings closed it's been safe, but in other areas not.