Page last updated at 11:31 GMT, Tuesday, 6 October 2009 12:31 UK

Tories 'to end speed camera rise'

speed camera
Campaign group Safe Speed welcomed the announcement

There will be no government funding for new fixed speed cameras if the Conservatives win the next election, the party's conference has been told.

Shadow transport secretary Theresa Villiers said councils would have to raise the money to install them, and prove they cut road accidents.

Councils would also be able to pilot axing traffic lights or allowing cyclists to turn left on red lights.

The Conservatives also pledged to keep free bus travel for pensioners.

Ms Villiers said: "Labour's army of speed cameras is not the best way to make our roads safer. Labour's dependence on fixed speed cameras has blinded them to the effectiveness of the alternatives.

"It is time to say enough is enough on fixed speed cameras - we have reached the high water mark."

Motorway delays

The party says councils will have to publish an annual report accounting for the use of each camera and consider alternatives such as vehicle-activated signs.

Ms Villiers said fixed speed cameras "should be judged on their merits in terms of preventing accidents".

"Electing a Conservative government would signal the end of the relentless expansion of fixed speed cameras."

Average speed cameras would continue to be used to enforce reduced speed limits during motorway road works, but the Conservatives "will stop the roll out of average speed cameras on urban roads".

A spokeswoman for campaign group Safe Speed said the pledge was the "first step towards a return to good road safety" and called for all fixed speed cameras to be abolished.

Other pledges made during the transport session at the party conference in Manchester were for new measures to stop congestion caused by road works and cutting the time taken to reopen motorways after accidents.

The party faithful were also assured that "concessionary fares passes" for pensioners would "unequivocally" be kept.

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