Road Safety GB has refuted claims by the TaxPayers’ Alliance that safety cameras have not delivered safety benefits.
A report published by the two organisations said: “Since speed cameras were first installed on British roads in 1991, the roads became more dangerous than they would have been without photo enforcement. The road casualty rate has declined at a slower rate since speed cameras were introduced in the early 1990s.”
While recognising a gradual decline in casualties, the report suggests this is due to technological developments such as anti-lock brakes, stability control, crumple zones and airbags.
Responding to the report, Alan Kennedy, chair of Road Safety GB, said: “Road Safety GB supports the use of safety cameras and other proven casualty reduction measures.
“Through the hard work of road safety professionals we have seen a significant reduction in the number of casualties on our roads over the last decade and there is no doubt that safety cameras have contributed to this."
Tim Philpot, Road Safety GB vice chair, added: “1990 seems an odd point in time to choose to make a point about camera technology. It didn’t really start to get used systematically until about 2000. And that’s when casualty numbers started to fall.”
The Kent & Medway Safety Camera Partnership also responded to the report, saying: “Safety cameras are having a proven effect on casualty reduction in our county.
"The number of speeding tickets issued by cameras in Kent and Medway has dropped year on year (from around 80,000 in 2002 to around 30,000 last year). This is because more people are complying with the speed limit, resulting in fewer deaths and injuries at the majority of these sites.”
Theresa Casbard, Hertfordshire’s head of road safety, added: "This is a ‘tax’ that no-one has to pay – drivers simply need to be aware of the speed limit and modify their driving speed accordingly."
Click here to download the TaxPayers’ Alliance and Drivers’ Alliance report.