A bereaved mother led a protest outside Taunton County Hall on Friday 3 September, at the decision to switch off many of the county’s safety cameras.
The protest, led by Clare Brixey and organised by Brake, was attended by concerned local residents and bereaved families determined to prevent others suffering the trauma of a loved one being killed.
Somerset is one of several local authorities to switch off safety cameras in recent weeks, and is now considering the future of its remaining cameras following government cuts to the road safety budget.
Clare Brixey’s son, Ashley (20), was killed in 2004 when the car he was travelling in, driven by his friend, went up an embankment, through a garden fence and landed upside down in a swimming pool. The driver had taken a bend too fast and lost control. He had also been drinking and taking drugs.
Clare Brixey said: “After Ashley’s death I made a commitment to do everything I can to prevent more tragedies on our roads, however they are caused. Speed is a contributory factor in so many fatal crashes, which is why we need to keep our cameras switched on.
“It makes me really angry that existing road safety measures, ones that are proven to work, are now being taken away. I want Somerset Council to acknowledge how appalled local communities are that many of our cameras are being switched off. And I want the government to acknowledge that by cutting speed camera funding it is letting people get away with breaking the law and endangering lives.”