Mobile speed cameras to stay

CLEVELAND and Durham Police will continue to use digital mobile cameras to tackle speeding motorists after a national study into their use.

New figures, released this week, show that five out of six fixed speed cameras in England and Wales use photographic film, with just 453 using the more reliable and more expensive digital cameras.

The figures, which were released by the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO), revealed that Cleveland Police was one of 18 forces which responded to the survey to say they have no fixed cameras that take digital footage and is one-of-seven with no plans to implement them.

But acting chief constable Sean White said the force’s digital mobile safety cameras are “efficient and cost effective”.

He said: “Working with our partners, road safety remains a high priority for the force and our mobile speed cameras, which are digital, provide an efficient and cost effective way to manage Cleveland’s road networks.

“By using mobile cameras we can deploy resources quickly and easily to any location where there is felt to be a requirement for them.”

Durham Police also operates mobile safety cameras and the force identifies locations around the county with the highest level of casualties, which includes Essington Way, in Peterlee.

A Durham Police spokeswoman said the mobile camera unit is used on specific roads in the county, as well as sites which have been subject to complaints.

People can see the roads on which the van operates on the force’s website. Following the recent survey, which was carried out by Road Safety Support, road safety organisation Brake is calling for forces that do implement fixed camera programmes to invest in digital and for the Government to increase funding.

Digital cameras run constantly while traditional cameras stop when the film runs out, meaning even if people are caught by the flash there is a chance they will avoid the fine.

Richard Coteau, of Brake, said: “Speed cameras are proven to be effective in reducing devastating crashes and casualties.

“We would therefore urge the Government to increase funding for local authorities so that they can invest in the most effective enforcement technology.”