SIR – Councillor Stuart Pile chooses to comment (Herts Advertiser, 25 June) on what the people of St Albans think of speed cameras. The effectiveness of a safety system is measured by how it performs but, as speed cameras do not work, politicians rely on
SIR - Councillor Stuart Pile chooses to comment (Herts Advertiser, 25 June) on what the people of St Albans think of speed cameras.
The effectiveness of a safety system is measured by how it performs but, as speed cameras do not work, politicians rely on reporting public opinion elicited using biased questions.
In 2007 (the last year for which full road accident reports are available for Herts) road fatalities were up 25 per cent on 2006 and serious injuries were up five per cent (despite a national trend for injuries to be increasingly under-reported).
Safety performance at camera sites was worse than in 2006. Fatalities across the county have stayed at virtually the same level since a sudden drop in 1992.
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Despite popular opinion, there is no evidence anywhere in the world that speed cameras make a positive contribution to road safety and I have recently lodged a formal complaint with Herts CC on the basis that well over �2m a year is being spent to buy, operate and maintain 200 cameras with nothing to show for it except worsening road safety, while the Council and the Camera Partnership publish misleading propaganda.
The tragic death of a 15-year-old on the Hemel Hempstead road in April was at the end of an "alley" of speed cameras, and a fatality in Smallford on Boxing Day 2007 was also close to a camera.
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Across the UK there is more evidence that speed cameras contribute to collisions and casualties than there is that they prevent them.
Swindon has recognised that cameras do not improve road safety and is removing them. It is time we did the same - before they cause another tragedy. There are many ways of spending �2m that will significantly improve road safety - cameras have been an expensive and tragic experiment.