Speed cameras in West Midlands switched off in cost-cutting drive


Speed cameras in West Midlands switched off in cost-cutting drive

Boy racers in the West Midlands will be jumping with joy as councils switch off the last 73 of the region's 305 speed cameras in an attempt to curb spending.

Currently, the cameras situated in some of the Midland's worst accident blackspots are still using costly wet film rather than a digital format, forcing local councils to re-think their anti-speeding strategy.

Police bosses are considering converting some of the old camera units to digital but in the meantime they will resort to the more cost-effective approach of mobile vans to catch speeders.

To make sure West Midlands police can keep up with speeding drivers they have doubled their mobile van units to four.

An upgrade would eventually fund the replacement of 71 cameras at the sites where accidents are most likely to occur.

Another 147 camera housings will be kept as a deterrent.

Kevin Clinton, head of road safety for the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), said: "Speed cameras are a very effective way of saving lives and reducing injuries on the road.

"They help save an estimated 100 lives a year in the UK. They should continue to be used where casualty statistics show they are needed."

The move, which involves switching off all fixed cameras in Birmingham, Coventry and the Black Country is expected to save £1m a year.

AOL Cars recently revealed - in an exclusive investigation - a similar situation on the M25, where costly overhead cameras failed to catch any speeding drivers in 2012.