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Tuesday, 26 November, 2002, 12:13 GMT
Cameras 'cut accident death rate'
Speed camera
Cameras are painted bright yellow
The number of fatal accidents has fallen by almost 70% on roads where speed cameras have been installed, according to a study.

The research in Glasgow also suggested a significant drop in crashes in which people were injured.

However, one motoring organisation warned that cameras were no substitute for police officers.

The locations of speed cameras in the Strathclyde Police area are made public.


The simple answer is that if you slow down you won't be caught and if you're not caught then you won't be penalised

Sergeant Bill Crawford
SCS
The cameras themselves are painted bright yellow and the force's own website reveals exactly where they can be found.

A message to motorists on the website argues that hidden cameras alienate drivers.

"There is a need to make the public understand that police officers get no joy out of issuing fixed penalty tickets, but that they do get a lot of satisfaction out of changing behaviour and attitudes to speed," it says.

"In the spirit of openness, drivers can now find out the exact location of safety cameras within the force area."

Strathclyde Police first introduced speed cameras nine years ago.

Fatal accidents

At 28 spots in Glasgow where fixed cameras have been in operation from April 2000 and March 2002, the number of crashes involving fatal and serious injuries was reduced by 68%.

The total figure for road crashes across the city fell by 17%.

Glasgow became one of eight pilot areas across the UK taking part in the National Cost Recovery Project, for speed and red light camera enforcement.

Strathclyde Police headquarters
Strathclyde Police lists locations on its website

Sergeant Bill Crawford, of the Strathclyde Camera Safety Partnership, said: "There is no gain without any pain.

"The simple answer is that if you slow down you won't be caught and if you're not caught then you won't be penalised.

"But there has to be some form of penalty and I think when you look at the relative scale of things, a 60 fine and three penalty points are relatively minor considering what could happen.

"If you hit, injure or indeed kill someone in a crash then that would be with you for the rest of your life."

'No substitute'

Deputy Transport Minister Lewis Macdonald said the initiative would boost road safety.

He said the Scottish Executive aimed to reduce the number of road deaths by up to 40% by 2010.

The AA has welcomed the fall in accidents.

However, the motoring organisation warned that cameras must be used alongside police officers and were not a substitute for them.

It said this was necessary to ensure that motorists learned the long-term lessons of slowing down.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
Sergeant Bill Crawford, SCSP
"There has to be some form of penalty "
Elizabeth Quigley reports
"Since the speed camera was put up last year there has not been a single crash."
See also:

23 Aug 02 | England
27 May 02 | Wales
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