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Accidents plummet thanks to cameras

SERIOUS accidents in Solihull have dropped by half since speed cameras were introduced 16-years-ago, it has been revealed.

SERIOUS accidents in Solihull have dropped by half since speed cameras were introduced 16-years-ago, it has been revealed.

Road chiefs were this week due to discuss the future of the devices, following swingeing cuts to the road safety budget.

A report prepared by Solihull Council said there had been 82 serious casualties last year, compared to 173 in 1994 - when cameras were first introduced.

But now the local authority must consider their future, after the road safety grant was slashed by 40 per cent.

Previously, half of the grant provided to the West Midlands was spent on maintaining the cameras.

Coun David Jamieson, cabinet member for transport and highways, and a former road safety minister himself, has implored the government not to hit the budget.

He’s also accused ministers of trying to remove the cameras “by stealth” and said there should be a full debate on whether they remain in place.

“My view is simple, I’m not in favour of speed cameras per se, but I am in favour of making the roads safer,” he told the Solihull News.

At a meeting yesterday (Thursday) afternoon, Coun Jamieson was to be briefed on the current situation. While some councils, such as Oxfordshire, have already pulled the plug - a decision on the future of cameras is still someway off in Solihull.

The matter has now been referred to the neighbourhood services scrutiny board, who will discuss the options going forward.

While Coun Jamieson has argued that cameras have made a difference at accident blackspots, he said that the cost of maintaining them is likely to hit the taxpayer in future.

In Solihull there are, at present, 32 fixed cameras and 20 mobile devices.

 

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