Frong page of tonights local newspaper there is a bloke complaining about the camera vans on the A500 in staffordshire, uk..

heres the artical...

Motorist caught speeding on the A500 claims he is a victim of "highway robbery" and is launching a protest in court against the positioning of mobile cameras.

Ray Leese, of Omega Way, Trentham, is one of thousands of drivers caught breaking the temporary 30mph limit by a speed trap stationed on the A50 overpass over the southbound carriageway. The 51-year-old believes the cameras are being cynically deployed as money-making machines to catch people out as they emerge from the main area of roadworks where he says it is unnecessary to enforce such a low limit.

However, camera bosses say speed readings are actually taken up to 300 yards away from the bridge as vehicles pass workmen in a restricted area.

Mr Leese, who is managing director at Hanley-based window installation company, is preparing for a court hearing later this month where he will demand an explanation about the camera's location.

He is hoping other fed-up motorists will back his campaign by signing a petition which he plans to hand over to the judge. Mr Leese said: "I thought that the reason the cameras were needed on the A500 was to protect the workmen and drivers, including myself.

"But if this is the case, why are they there catching the drivers who have kept to the reduced limit throughout the roadworks section and been released from it, instead of catching those who are tailgating and driving dangerously where the roadworks are?

"I know I was officially speeding and don't expect the courts to be lenient about it.

"This is my first speeding offence in 35 years of driving, my first points and fine. I feel this is a case of highway robbery because of the way the cameras are placed.

It certainly has no bearing on safety." The father-of-three added: "I would like to think that the courts could acknowledge that this siting is out of order, and that the ultimate result is everyone is victimised.

"We should maybe have the fine but not the points. Calling it road safety is an insult, it's just making a few bob. I'm interested in hearing from the other people who have been caught and feel it's an injustice, so they can sign the petition.

"I will be asking for someone who runs the cameras to be present at the court hearing to explain themselves."

Another driver furious at being fined is solicitor Jonathan Bott, of Price Street, Burslem, who said: "I will certainly sign the petition, it is important that people ask questions about this from the powers that be."

Since two mobile units began enforcing the temporary limit in July, an estimated 5,500 drivers have been caught - racking up more than 300,000 in fines.

Tim Roberts, project manager for Staffordshire Casualty Reduction Partnership, said: "Many people think we only enforce at the end of the roadworks but this is not the case.

"For northbound traffic enforcement there is a suitable safe position to park our vehicle out of the way of the works and not presenting a further hazard to motorists. For southbound traffic we utilise the bridges above.

"Speed readings are not taken at the point where the van is parked near the end of the works as people think, but some 200 to 300 metres back into the roadworks."