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Cameras catch more speeders - rise of 50 per cent in five years
SPEED cameras are catching over 50 per cent more drivers in Oxfordshire than they did five years ago, with one bringing in £1,173 every day in potential fines.
Today the Oxford Mail can reveal which cameras catch the most motorists and how many tickets they each dish out.
Speeding drivers have been fined more than £13m in the last five years after the cameras flashed 217,358 times – each flash representing a £60 fine.
The Thames Valley Police figures, obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, show in 2013 cameras caught 59,217 drivers – 53 per cent more than the 38,664 drivers caught out in 2009.
A camera on the A34 southbound near Wytham last year caught out 7,138 drivers and generated a potential £428,280 in fines – the equivalent of £1,173 every day.
The A34 southbound at Wytham.
Nicci Saunders became an ambassador for road safety charity Brake, after her partner Joe Wilkins was killed on his bike in 2012 in Eaton Road between Eynsham and Appleton.
Last night the 41-year-old said the new figures showed drivers could not get away with speeding, but she said it was concerning to see so many breaking the law.
But she said: “If it changes somebody when they have been caught and makes them think about their driving then that has to be worth it.”
Drivers can avoid speeding fines if they opt to take a speed awareness course.
Mark McArthur Christie, a Bampton-based road safety commentator, said the rise was down to speed limits being lowered.
He said: “Drivers do not drive to a number on the stick, they drive to the speed that feels right to them and safer for them on a particular road. The last thing we want is drivers driving by numbers.”
The most prolific camera in Oxford was one in Woodstock Road which has caught 7,109 drivers over the last five years – leading to £462,540 being handed out in fines.
Road safety campaigner Ted Dewan, of Beech Croft Road in Summertown, said he was not surprised as it was a wide open road and close to the high speeds of the ring road.
Road safety campaigner Ted Dewan.
The father-of-one, 53, said it was a shame speed cameras were needed to slow drivers down and said it would be better if roads were designed to keep the traffic calm.
He said: “I am glad they are effective. The only thing that depresses me is they create this sense that it is a punishment.”
After three children and a student died in a crash on the Eastern Bypass in 2005, relatives campaigned for the speed limit to be cut to 50mph. Over the last five years cameras caught out 7,068 motorists.
Chief Inspector Henry Parsons, head of the roads policing team, said: “The reason for this rise is because we are focusing our resources on sites where there are real safety risks or concerns have been raised by the community.
“We very much hope this has contributed to Oxfordshire’s roads being safer than ever.”
The county’s speed cameras were turned off in August 2010 to save Oxfordshire County Council cash, but turned back on eight months later.
During that time 18 people died, compared to 12 deaths in the same period the year before, the first rise in four years.
Nineteen people died on Oxfordshire roads last year, compared to 30 in 2009.
County council spokesman Paul Smith said: “There is good evidence that measures to reduce speeds, including speed cameras, are effective in reducing the number and severity of accidents.”
Fixed penalty charges are £60 though some of those caught may forego the fine by attending a speed awareness course costing £95 or go to court. The money goes to the Treasury.
- Go to ow.ly/3jFvlG for an interactive map of speed camera sites and the tickets issued.
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