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U.K. speed cameras not on the worst roads


Date: Monday, 22. December 2008

Autocar Magazine says its study of speed camera locations on British roadways indicates a bias in favor of targeting safer roads. The study adds fuel to the debate that speed cameras may be deployed to bring in revenues rather than to improve safety.

Autocar editor Steve Fowler says the government claimed cameras would be sited where there was a history of speed-related accidents "and that they are not there as a means of raising money". The magazine says there are 24 cameras on the 50 safest roads and just 18 on the 49 most dangerous. It based its research on estimates of risky roads from an AA study into more than 830 roads nationwide. The most dangerous was reckoned to be the A889 near Dalwhinnie in Perth and Kinross, where an 8.4 mile stretch of road had an accident rate of 875 fatal and serious accidents per 1bn vehicle kilometers between 1997 and 1999 - but no speed cameras. The second most hazardous road - an eight-mile section of the A537 between Macclesfield in Cheshire and Buxton in Derbyshire - also had no cameras.

However, Britain's Department of Transport looked at the statistics differently, maintaining that there as a speed camera on average for each 58 kilometers of the safer roads and more frequently every 46 km on the more dangerous roads. DOT research showed a reduction of 47% in the number of people killed and seriously injured at camera sites, compared to the previous years without the cameras. Read BBC Web site article

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