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Public wants speed cameras

    SPEED cameras save lives and campaigns to reduce the numbers of cameras being used on British roads are putting people's lives at risk. That is the verdict of Transport 2000, which points to figures that show the public support this view.

    A poll of polls, released today by Transport 2000, demonstrates ongoing popular support for speed cameras. The environmental transport group's work, based on six different surveys, shows that support for the use of speed cameras averages 74 per cent. The latest poll included in the calculation was carried out by ICM for the BBC in October this year and showed support for speed cameras running at 75 per cent with only 19 per cent against.
    Demonstrating their concern about speeding issues, local communities will be taking part in the National Day of Action on Traffic Speeds being organised by Transport 2000 on Wednesday 10 December 2003. Communities will be calling for more police action to tackle fast and speeding drivers illustrating how they are dangerous and represent a blight on the quality of life of local communities.
    Vicky Cann, Assistant Director of Transport 2000, said: "Since speed cameras started to be more widely used in 2000, opinion polling has consistently shown strong support for their use. We must not allow a very vocal minority of motorists to distort this issue. Speed cameras are actually the motorist's friend because they make the roads safer for everyone.
    "The public support the use of speed cameras because they understand two very simple things: the faster you go, the more likely you are to be involved in a crash and the more severe the impact of the crash. These points have been proved time and again by research carried out by reputable independent bodies like Transport Research Laboratory."

    The ICM Research Ltd poll carried out for the BBC in October 2003 asked: "Taking all things into account, on balance, would you say you are in favour of speed cameras or against speed cameras." Seventy-five per cent responded to say they were in favour; with only 19 per cent were against.
    MORI in August 2001 showed that 70 per cent of respondents to a poll supported the use of speed cameras.
    An NOP/Evening Standard poll in summer 2002 found that 84 per cent of motorists in London and the southern region viewed the use of speed cameras as a good thing, even though more than half had been 'flashed', or flashed and fined, by one.
    A November 2002 You Gov poll by Transport 2000 showed that 75 per cent of respondents in London thought that cameras should be used more widely on dangerous roads.
    A 2003 study for the Scottish Executive carried out by researchers at
Napier University said that 75 per cent of drivers thought speed cameras to be a good thing.
    The 2003 Used Car Market Report recorded a 62 per cent satisfaction rating for speed cameras amongst motorists.

    Government evidence shows that speed cameras reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured at camera sites by 35 per cent. The number of pedestrians killed or seriously injured at camera sites has fallen by 56 per cent.

    According to work done by the independent Transport Research Laboratory, speed is a contributory factor in around one-third of fatal crashes.
    Speed is a more significant factor in crashes than drink driving.
    For every 1 mph reduction in a driver's speed, the chance of being involved in a crash drops by 5 per cent.
    Hitting a pedestrian at 35mph is twice as likely to kill them as hitting them at 30mph.
    No driver has to pay a speed fine: fines are only incurred if people drive above the limit.
    Speed cameras cannot be placed for revenue purposes: this is expressly
ruled out by Government rules.

    A new report in the United States illustrates what happens when you raise speed limits. The New York Times reported on 24 November 2003 that 22 states that raised speed limits in the late 1990s experienced 1880 more deaths on the road over a period of three years, compared with those states that did not raise limits.

    Only a small minority of police forces do not recognise the road safety benefits of speed cameras. There are 42 safety camera partnerships covering 46 of the 51 police areas in Great Britain.

Link: Transport 2000