Road Safety News
 

DfT unveils new 'transparency rules' for safety cameras

Tuesday 28th June 2011

'Full information' about speed cameras will be published by local authorities and the police for the first time, Mike Penning, road safety minister announced on 27/6/11.

Figures showing the numbers of accidents and casualties at camera sites - both before and after cameras were installed - will be published by local authorities.

And police forces will publish the number of speeding prosecutions arising from each camera in their area, as well as force-wide information about whether offenders are fined, complete a speed awareness course or are taken to court.

Mike Penning said: "We want to improve accountability and make sure that the public are able to make informed judgements about the decisions made on their behalf. So if taxpayers' money is being spent on speed cameras then it is right that information about their effectiveness is available to the public.

“That is why we want full details of accidents and casualties at camera sites, along with the number of offences arising from each camera, to be easily accessible. This will help to show what impact cameras are having on road safety and also how the police are dealing with offenders.”

English highway authorities are required to either publish or ensure publication of site by site casualty, collision and speed information for permanent fixed camera sites as soon as practical, and should provide the website address to the DfT by 20 July. 

The information should usually include annual collision and casualty data back to 1990 for the numbers of killed and seriously injured people and for all personal injuries. Local authorities which support camera enforcement financially should also ensure that a deployment strategy is published.  

The DfT will set up a central hub providing links to local websites where the information is published. 

The Highways Agency will publish site by site casualty, collision and speed information for permanent fixed camera sites on its network or provide links to where such sites are being included in what local authorities are publishing.

Police forces are to publish the number of prosecutions arising from each permanent or long term temporary fixed camera site in their area each year, along with the total number of offences recorded by all cameras and the total numbers of offenders given a fixed penalty notice, or taken to court and the numbers of people opting to complete speed awareness courses.

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Better late than never. This information should end the debate once and for all as to whether cameras were well intentioned with justification to reducing accidents and injuries or just cash cows.

I look forward to seeing the report.
Bob Craven, Lancs

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