Discussion Forum
Mobile Speed Cameras

From Mandy Holmes
Monday, 5 November 2007

This valley has seen an increase in mobile speed cameras, one in Todmorden, Mytholmroyd, and Ludd Foot. I am a decent driver, had my licence for 22 years, never had a single ticket or accident. Surely this must show for something considering my annual mileage is around 25k!

Anyway, last week in Mytholmroyd there was a mobile speed camera motorbike clocked me doing 33 miles per hour at a staggering 291 meters away! Now after 22 years I have to face 3 penalty points and a £60 fine.

Firstly the guidelines are 10% +2. However it is upto the partnership if they chose to prosecute to these guidelines, West Yorkshire obviously don’t!

Whilst no I don’t condone speeding ect, I believe this is an unfair exploitation of the motorist again. Surely if road safety was a priority for our area there are other methods to try other than speed cameras! It annoys me as I think of myself as a good safe driver, got overtook today by some idiotic boy racer doubling the limit! Where is the justice?

Posted by Joseph S
Monday, 5 November 2007

I agree it seems unusually harsh. I got a parking ticket in Halifax this year due to my own stupidness. When I explained what I'd done wrong they canceled it and said that they normally let people off for a first offence. This seemed really reasonable to me.

Had you been done for the 10th time or something then I'd say tough. But 3 mph over and 1st offence seems like a poor way to improve road safety to me.

Posted by Jim Band
Monday, 5 November 2007

Mandy said: "this is an unfair exploitation of the motorist again"

Were you speeding Mandy? Is it against the law? Do you think that a previously unblemished driving record makes you somehow above the law, or less worthy of prosecution?

You were caught speeding, pay the fine and accept the penalty points you deserve with good grace like the rest of us. It's hardly the end of the world. And the guidelines are just that, the law says don't drive above the speed limit.

From Mandy Holmes
Monday, 5 November 2007

Jim Your response with regards to speeding is simple. Your right im wrong. Can you honestly admit to never going over slightly. Whilst yes speeding is an absolute offence, I believe this is an unfair conviction. Firstly I drive a 2 litre car, the difference on the speedo between 30 and 40 is minimal so to ensure your doing 30 you would be spending more time looking at the speedo rather than the road in front. How can you judge the safety of everyone because of 3 miles per hour! Im sure I could drive at 25 miles per hour more in a dangerous manor! Speeding is the cause of around 5 percent of accidents, and the statistics have been glorified to suit our tax tax tax government. I'm sure it would be a different story if you got a ticket!

Posted by Jim Band
Monday, 5 November 2007

Mandy, I'm sorry to say it would not be a different story if I got a ticket. I would accept that it was my own fault, whether I (chose to) drive 2 litre car or a 1 litre. Wouldn't be delighted or proud about it, but I certainly wouldn't start blaming others.

I'm not as sure as you about the statistics surrounding speeding being the cause of accidents, but I do know that the limits are in place to minimise the potentially lethal outcome of those accidents. I also don't understand how anyone could cause more accidents by driving just below the speed limit as you suggest. But you'll soon be limited to 20mph anyway, so we'll see I guess.

Posted by Danny Thompson
Monday, 5 November 2007

Mandy, you said:

"I drive a 2 litre car, the difference on the speedo between 30 and 40 is minimal so to ensure your doing 30 you would be spending more time looking at the speedo rather than the road in front."

The stark fact is that from the perspective of a person hit by a car the difference between 30 and 40mph is anything but minimal.

At 30mph 80% of those hit will survive. At 40mph 80% will die. Each mile per hour over 30 significantly lessens the chances of survival. Children have higher rates of death, as their smaller bodies absorb more of the energy of the impact.

If you have difficulty reading your speed correctly you need to do something about it. Remember that speed limits set a *maximum* speed, not a target to aim for, so hovering under 30mph should not be a problem.

You are understandably upset and angry at being caught speeding. But I can't see in any way how this could be described as 'exploiting the motorist'.

Have you been offered the chance to attend a speed awareness course instead of paying the ticket and getting the points? Many areas offer them for lower-level speeding offences. In the area I live they include a talk from a woman whose son was killed in a crash a couple of years ago. Once drivers have attended such a course, and come face to face with the tragic consequences of speeding, many find their attitudes change - and the speeds they drive at fall somewhat.


Posted by Graham Barker
Monday, 5 November 2007

I think the penalty for 'normal' speeding is now just one point, not three.

That apart, 30 mph is the upper limit in built-up areas, so 33 mph seems a fair cop. For several reasons we've all got to learn to slow down and accept that cars are not for speed but for convenience. I'd like to see many more speed cameras, all of them concealed. That way we might all learn, albeit some of us the hard way. And I speak as someone who was caught by a speed camera a few years ago, and had the full dose of three points on my licence. I didn't moan about it - I just started taking serious notice of speed limits.

Posted by Bernie B
Tuesday, 6 November 2007

I think you will find, that speed limits are very much a target, hence the 3mph allowance on 30.

But hey, If everyone drove at 10mph, this lot would then be moaning about congestion, or the worsening of it, in our beautiful little town for great little shops.

I sometimes think alot of the people who seem to talk the same old would be more suited to an island off the coast of scotland?

Posted by Charlie O
Tuesday, 6 November 2007

I think it would help people to keep to the, especially, 30 mph limit, if there were not so many drivers driving so close to the car in front, urging them to go faster.

When going from HB to Mytholmroyd, and slowing down at Walkley's Clogs to enter the 30 mph limit, I have lost count of the number of drivers behind me who must be at most one car length behind, and carry on at that distance all the way through Mytholmroyd.

A week or so ago, again at Walkley's Clogs - but going towards HB, two cars overtook me on the S bend, double white lines in the middle of the road, just because I was doing 30 mph.

If they want to have a head on crash, let them do it without involving me!

Posted by Anne Handley
Tuesday, 6 November 2007

Like Mandy I was booked for doing just over 30, and this was in an area and in circumstances where it was perfectly safe to do so (in my opinion). But you just have to take it on the chin and admit you were breaking the law. It does gall, though, to see other motorists overtaking at 40 or 50 in a 30 zone without speed cameras, or driving right up behind you and pressurizing you to go faster.

Some of them will get booked eventually, but the speed camera system is a pretty crude one and can't distinguish between drivers who have just accidentally allowed their speed to creep up a bit - maybe for the first time - and those who are habitually fast drivers, but slow down to 35 when they see a speed camera. But I think for most people getting a ticket makes you aware of your speed more and is likely to make you stick to the limits in future. And losing your licence can lead to a compulsory course where you are confronted with victims of road accidents, and that must surely be an even greater deterrent.

I'd like to see more prosecutions for dangerous driving - overtaking around the bend at Walkley's is dangerous - maybe we should be reporting this sort of thing to the police? Do you think there's any chance that they would follow it up though?

Posted by Jim Band
Tuesday, 6 November 2007

Bernie, the allowance has nothing to do with speed being a target, that is dangerous misinformation.

The allowance takes account of minor variations in driving speed due to conditions, speedometer accuracy, and the drivers awareness of their exact speed. You know, so that they do not have to constantly watch their speedo.

They are called speed limits, and not speed targets, for a very good reason.

Posted by Mike R
Wednesday, 7 November 2007

Hey Jim

"Only 354 of 90,000 police caught on camera speeding or jumping red lights last year were punished and only one in 200 officers was fined or given points, compared with 84 per cent of ordinary drivers." Source: Daily Mail.

Most of us know the only people "above the law" are the Police themselves. That's how you can get away with shooting an innocent Brazilian in the head and then misrepresent the circumstances in order to smear him.

Posted by Tim B
Wednesday, 7 November 2007

"Only 354 of 90,000 police caught on camera speeding or jumping red lights last year were punished and only one in 200 officers was fined or given points, compared with 84 per cent of ordinary drivers." Source: Daily Mail.

I would imagine most of these were answering an emergency call.

Posted by Mike R
Wednesday, 7 November 2007

"I would imagine most of these were answering an emergency call."

Well, you imagine wrong. In only a quarter of the cases did the police cars have their blue lights flashing, suggesting officers were attending an emergency. For the West Yorkshire force the figures for 2006 were: Speeding Offences 209; Tickets Issued 0.

I for one would be interested to see the stats for off-duty police incidents as well.

From Janice S
Sunday, 11 November 2007

Well, I wish they'd set up a mobile speed camera on the road out of Hebden Bridge going towards Mytholmroyd. Some drivers seem to assume that once they've gone past Albert Street they can drive at 40-50 mph.

Mandy, it may seem unfair to get done for speeding when you're only 3 mph over the limit but if a child had run out in front of you, that 3 mph might have made a lot of difference... A 6 year old was hit by a car in Walsden a few weeks ago, late at night - he'd been to a party and ran staright out into the road. Luckily for him the driver doesn't seem to have been speeding and he wasn't seriously injured but how would the driver had felt if he'd been speeding and the child had died?

From Frank W
Monday, 12 November 2007

It looks like the police in many parst of the country are tightening up. A doctor friend of mine was on her way to the hospital in Newcastle and was done for 31 mph in a 30, no latitude.

The police's argument for no latitude was that 'we consider modern speedometers to be accurate'.

From Paul D
Friday, 16 November 2007

Driving above the speed limit is arrogant madness, it's like you put aside all the evidence, all the expertise, all the road safety data and base your driving on your own limited experience. It's what children do. We don't let them take control of a car. We shouldn't let people who break the speed limit stay in control of a car. Why do some people think that restrictions on our actions just to hold us back? Selfishly agitating for their right to ignore the consensus? Drive as fast as you like and die, but please don't kill my kids in the interim.