ROADS: 68 speed cameras are not enough
SPEED cameras in Cambridge-shire have caught fewer drivers than those in any other part of the country.
New figures published by the Department of Transport this week show that just short of 20,000 motorists were hit with £60 spot fines during the past financial year.
And Cambridgeshire Safety Camera Partnership (CSCP) says it's because the county has fewer cameras than most areas.
The fines handed out added up to £1,196,460 and an overall profit of £175,199, while some areas recorded profits of more than £1 million.
The CSCP incorporates organisations including the police, Peterborough City Council, the Ambulance Service and the Highways Agency.
Spokesman Stuart Clarkson said: "In terms of the numbers of people who get fines from being caught by speed cameras, we are the lowest in the country. That is down to us having fewer cameras."
There are 68 fixed speed cameras covering roads in Cambridgeshire and two mobile ones – and just 24 of the fixed cameras are located in and around Peterborough.
Mr Clarkson added that the number of fines being issued has shown a slight decrease on previous years, indicating motorists are obeying the speed limits.
Fines are used to cover the CSCP's running costs, with any profit kept by the Government to help fund further road safety initiatives.
Exact locations for cameras are decided according to national guidelines relating to numbers of fatalities and accidents.
Mr Clarkson said that the partnership will be bidding for funding for extra cameras, which will be located in areas of greatest demand.
He said: "We welcome putting cameras in places where they're needed.
"People do get quite upset that they have been caught by speed cameras, but we go out of our way to make them visible and we would not do that if we just wanted to catch people out and make money.
"People are still dying on the roads because of speeding. If people don't want to see more cameras, the best advice is to drive more safely."
Sara Christmas, whose daughter Claire Hilbert (17) was killed in a car crash on the Fletton Parkway, Stanground, Peterborough, in April 2004, says she is appalled at the low number of cameras.
Ms Christmas, who campaigns with the Roadpeace charity, said more cameras are needed to get tough with the thousands of drivers who flout speed limits every day.
Ms Christmas said: "Sixty-eight cameras for the whole county is definitely too few. We need more and they need to be effective.
"If there were more cameras and new ones installed, it would make drivers aware of the speed limits more often.
"I would welcome them putting in a bid for more cameras so that Cambridgeshire is more in line with other counties."
05 January 2006