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Last Updated: Tuesday, 1 July, 2003, 13:53 GMT 14:53 UK
Speed cameras at "crash hotspots"
A scene from a television advertising campaign
A scene from a DoE television advertising campaign

Three Belfast roads described as "hotspots" for accidents have become the first areas in Northern Ireland to have fixed police speed cameras.

The Police Service of Northern Ireland launched what was called the Northern Ireland Safety Camera Scheme on the busy Saintfield Road at the junction with Lenaghan Avenue on Tuesday.

Fixed cameras are also being placed on the Antrim and Upper Newtownards roads in the Greater Belfast area.

The police expect them to make a major contribution to reducing crashes caused by speed.

The scheme is a partnership between the Police Service of Northern Ireland and a number of government departments and agencies. It will also increase the number of mobile speed cameras from five to seven.

Money received from speeding fines will be used on extending the camera scheme at what police describe as "clearly identified hotspots".

So far this year 82 people have been killed on the province's roads.

Police say there will be an ongoing roll-out of fixed cameras and have pledged enforcement at more than 80 locations, which have a history of collisions and evidence of speeding.

This is a shameful situation and it is all the more shameful because it is avoidable
Superintendent Ian Hamill

They are also launching a television advertisement about speed enforcement which complements the Department of Environment's latest campaign to highlight the dangers of speed.

Superintendent Ian Hamill, head of the Road Policing Development Branch, said speed accounted for one in four road deaths.

"This is a shameful situation and it is all the more shameful because it is avoidable," he said.

A week ago, the government launched a campaign aimed at changing driving attitudes among young men.

Statistics show that 80% of fatal car crashes involving speeding in Northern Ireland are caused by men between the ages of 17 and 24.


WATCH AND LISTEN
BBC NI's Conor MacAuley
"The exact location of the cameras will be published on the police website"



SEE ALSO:
Clampdown on speeding drivers
20 Jun 03  |  Northern Ireland
Police clamp down on drink drivers
18 Feb 03  |  Northern Ireland
Small drop in drink-driving figures
18 Dec 02  |  Northern Ireland
Drink drive campaign targets youth
04 Jul 01  |  Northern Ireland


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