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Last Updated: Wednesday, 24 May 2006, 16:10 GMT 17:10 UK
Camera to focus on driver's face
Speed camera
Speed cameras will take an image from front and back
Forward-facing speed cameras could be used in a bid to prevent guilty drivers from blaming others for offences.

The cameras will take a photo of the driver's face, making it difficult for drivers to evade penalties by saying they were not behind the wheel.

Some drivers, who are close to losing their licences, have exploited the current system by "transferring" penalty points to relatives or friends.

Ten cameras have been trialled in Essex for the past two years.

"The cameras have proved successful in some cases, but we shall wait until the end of this financial year before producing results and deciding how successful the trials have been," a spokeswoman for the Essex speed camera partnership said.

Photo delay

The Home Office said the Metropolitan Police was considering adopting the technology, but it was a matter for the local safety camera partnership.

The forward-facing cameras operate, without using flash, two seconds after the initial speed camera flashes.

Registered owners are first asked if they were driving and photos are used to confirm their identity if there is a dispute, a Home Office spokeswoman said.

The photos are also used in tracing stolen cars, she added.


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