New crook-spotter cameras worry drivers
02 March 2006
One of the new cameras
One of the new cameras
NEW CCTV cameras are causing confusion for drivers who think they are speed traps.

Employment consultant, Abdul Miah, who spotted two of the new cameras last week, was convinced that they were new-look speed cameras when he first saw them.

He initially complained to the Herts Safety Camera Partnership that the new cameras were only a few feet from a 30mph sign where the speed dropped from a 40mph limit which did not give people a chance to slow down.

But Mr Miah, who lives in St Albans, was told the new cameras were nothing to do with the partnership and they could not tell him to whom they belonged.

In fact the cameras are among eight which have been installed on key routes into the city and will be linked directly to the Police National Computer when they go live later this month.

They will use a number-plate-recognition system to spot stolen cars and vehicles belonging to known criminals.

The cameras are being introduced with a 100,000 grant from the Home Office and police intelligence officers will be joining CCTV camera operators in the St Albans city-centre control room.

District council community portfolio holder, Cllr Brian Peyton, said: "I understand that some people are concerned that these are speed cameras but they most certainly are not. They will be used purely to detect suspect vehicles and then we will be able to use our own CCTV system to track them.