Speed camera numbers have remained the same

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THERE are 18 fixed speed cameras operational across South Yorkshire at any one time, new figures have revealed.

The South Yorkshire Safer Roads Partnership disclosed - under the Freedom of Information Act - that in January it had 18 cameras operational - the same number it had in June 2010.

It had the same number of fixed camera housing units in both years but checked speeds at 45 sites in January compared to 47 when asked 18 months earlier.

Professor Stephen Glaister, director of the RAC Foundation, which requested the same figures for every county across the country, said the figures showed speed cameras had not been turned off.

He said: “Many people believe there has been a mass switch-off of cameras over the past couple of years. But the data shows that, overall, this is simply not true.

“The RAC Foundation’s best evidence is that if all speed cameras were turned off around 80 more people would be killed on the roads each year with 700 others seriously injured.

“Therefore we welcome these figures which suggest the majority of fixed cameras have been retained and housings are being kept in place to act as a deterrent.

“Although there are many more housings than cameras, it seems that the cameras are regularly rotated between them ensuring there is some level of positive enforcement at most sites.

“It is also important to note that many police constabularies rely heavily on mobile cameras to catch law breakers and in many cases have now have an increased emphasis on this type of operation.

“We are concerned funds won’t be available to purchase new equipment to replace increasingly antiquated film cameras. There is a lack of money for all aspects of road safety and we urge councillors to allocate adequate budgets to protect people on the roads by whatever means is appropriate.

“Recent figures showing that deaths on the road rose in 2011, for the first time since 2003, only reinforce the need to retain the focus on road safety.”