6:00am Monday 7th July 2014
A SPEED camera on the A34 near Oxford caught the fourth highest number of speeding drivers in the UK last year, bringing in £126,640 in fines.
Figures released on Friday by insurance company LV, after a Freedom of Information request to Thames Valley Police, reveal the camera on the southbound carriageway close to Wytham stopped 7,138 motorists, who were fined £60 each.
Only three cameras in Greater Manchester, London and Staffordshire caught more drivers.
Ted Dewan, 53, a road safety campaigner from Summertown, said roads such as the A34 are designed in a way that encourages drivers to speed.
He said: “The roads were built with higher speeds in mind than today’s limits.
“They’re wide open roads and it’s easy for drivers to switch to autopilot and drive faster than the speed limit.
“Speed cameras don’t actually slow people down. I’d much rather see a system like they have in France where silhouettes in the shape of people are placed at sites where there have been fatal crashes. That would make people think and slow down.”
Liberal Democrat city and county councillor Jean Fooks said it was too tempting for drivers to break the speed limit and more should be done to clamp down on speeding on all roads.
But Hugh Bladon, founder member and treasurer of the Alliance of British Drivers, said the number of people caught on the A34 did not necessarily mean the road was hazardous or people were driving dangerously.
He said: “If a camera has caught over 7,000 people in one year it suggests the speed limit on the road has not been set correctly.”
A total of 161,915 drivers were issued with speeding tickets by Thames Valley Police last year, up from 160,181 in 2012.
There were 61,972 tickets issued between the start of this year and June 18.
Thames Valley Police spokesman Rhianne Pope said: “We are committed to reducing road deaths and casualties and speed camera enforcement is one tool we use to address this. The speed cameras are there for a reason. If you stick to the limit you won’t get caught.”
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