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Last Updated: Tuesday, 26 June 2007, 03:22 GMT 04:22 UK
Speed camera fines reach 114.6m
Generic picture of a Gatso camera next to a busy road
The figures show wide variations in fine collection rates
Speed camera fines rose to 114.6m last year even though fewer fixed penalty notices were issued to motorists, a survey has indicated.

The total was 1% more than in the 2004/05 financial year because more fines were collected.

The Philip's road atlas company figures showed the areas paying the highest and lowest in fines per person were North Wales (5.82) and Merseyside (0.80).

The government said research had proved that cameras saved lives.

Some areas had a 100% rate for collecting fines, although Surrey managed only a 47% success rate.

MOST MONEY RAISED
1. North Wales 5.82
2. Bedfordshire 5.20
3. Northamptonshire 4.72
4. Wiltshire 4.61
5. Warwickshire 4.39
(Average amount per resident)

There was a 48% increase in tickets issued in Leicestershire and a 30% decrease in Derbyshire.

The most money collected was in London, totalling 9.45m.

Speed camera expert Stephen Mesquita, who got the figures from the Department for Transport, said: "At Philip's, we find the regional inconsistencies very disturbing. They undermine the credibility of the scheme.

"Wales is the speed camera centre of the UK. Mid and South Wales comes second only to London for raising money through fines.

"And North Wales raises more per resident than any other area, although some midland counties, like Bedfordshire, Northants and Warwickshire, run it close."

LEAST MONEY RAISED
1. Merseyside 0.80
2. West Midlands 1.11
3. London 1.26
4. Surrey 1.33
5. Greater Manchester 1.39
(Average amount per resident)

He said the situation reinforced motorists' feelings that speed cameras were unfair.

A Department spokesman said: "We don't want drivers' money, we want them to slow down.

"Independent research has conclusively proved that cameras save lives, with around 1,745 fewer people killed or seriously injured each year at camera sites."

Tuesday is the last day for people to sign a petition on the Downing Street website calling on the prime minister to scrap speed cameras.

The petition, submitted by the Safe Speed campaign, already has more than 26,000 signatures.


SEE ALSO
Call for less visible speed traps
05 Jun 07 |  South Yorkshire
Motorway stretch 'fastest in UK'
29 May 07 |  South of Scotland

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