SIR — A letter headlined Speed cameras (Herts Advertiser, February 28) made inaccurate and worrying accusations about the effects of speed cameras which I would like to address. Speed cameras do save lives. The latest Herts figures (to December 2006) s
SIR - A letter headlined "Speed cameras" (Herts Advertiser, February 28) made inaccurate and worrying accusations about the effects of speed cameras which I would like to address.
Speed cameras do save lives. The latest Herts figures (to December 2006) show that the number of people killed or seriously injured at camera sites has gone down by 64.4 per cent and the number of people suffering injuries as a result of collisions has gone down by 40.9 per cent. I'm sure you will agree these are very encouraging figures.
While we have strong supporting evidence to show that speed cameras are working to save lives, there are unfortunately circumstances in which collisions occur which we cannot prevent. Even though we introduce safety engineering measures and speed cameras at known accident spots, sometimes collisions occur as a result of things like driver error or mechanical defects and nothing we do could prevent these types of collisions. It is necessary to not only look at the figures for fatalities on the roads, but also the causes that led to the collision in the first place. And although the number of fatalities in the county as a whole rose last year, the general trend is downwards and the number of deaths at camera sites is down.
There is absolutely no reason why cameras should cause a distraction to motorists. There is a set speed limit on roads with speed cameras, as with all other roads, which drivers should not exceed. The fact that there is a camera should make no difference to the level of concentration required by drivers to enable them to keep within the speed limit. None of the publicity carried out by the partnership is self promoting. It is done to educate road users about the potential dangers they face, and how to keep themselves and others safe on Herts roads.
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We have every confidence that speed cameras do save lives and I think the figures speak for themselves. We will continue to use them, along with other measures, to drive down the number of people killed and injured on our roads.
CLLR STUART PILE,
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Herts County Council Executive Member for Highways, Transport and Rural Affairs