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FAQs

It is clear that many people, particularly those with local knowledge of the 8 roads, are supportive of this development and agree with the Road Safety Partnership that it provides a real opportunity to reduce casualties, save lives and prevent families from losing loved ones.
Other constructive comments about road safety in general have been raised and whilst it is not possible to respond to everyone personally, we will try and cover the main themes being raised.

Where will they be?

Following a review of roads in Lancashire and collision related casualties the following routes have been proposed for average speed camera systems.

All routes are covered in both directions.

1.       A565 Southport Road (1.2m) between B5246 at Mere Brow and the Gravel Lane roundabout at Banks.

2.       A583 Preston New Road (7.5m) between M55 Junction 4 (Peel Road, Peel Hill), through Kirkham bypass, and Blackpool Road at Preston Old Road at Clifton.

3.       A588 Head Dyke Lane, Pilling (2m) between Fold House Caravan Park and Bourbles Lane.

4.       A59 Brockholes Brow (0.5m) between M6 junction 31 and Glenluce Drive.

5.       A6 London Road, Preston (0.7m) between Capitol Centre (Winery Lane) and Albyn Street East.

6.       A675 Belmont (8.5m) between M65 junction 3, through Abbey Village and Belmont to Scout Road.

7.       A682 Gisburn Road (5.2m) between A59 at Gisburn and Whittycroft Avenue (between Barrowford and Blacko).

8.       B6232 Grane Road (4.7m) between A56 through Haslingden Grane to A6177 Elton Road junction with Sough Lane.

How do they work?

Average speed camera systems work using automatic number plate recognition and a set of cameras over a planned length of road. In Lancashire this ranges from 0.5 miles to 8.5 miles long. The cameras recognise number plates at set points along the routes; the system will calculate vehicle speed based on the time taken to travel between the points of a known distance. Infrared technology means images are clearer in low light and in the dark.

Why are they there?

Lancashire’s Average Speed Camera Systems are being installed to improve road safety. They encourage road users to travel within the existing signed speed limits (there will be no changes to speed limits during installation on the 8 routes). Some of the average speed camera systems will be placed on routes where there is a need for action but there aren’t any other options for enforcement.  All the routes have been carefully selected based on casualty information since 01.01.2011 on a case by case basis. Since 01.01.2011 (to 30.09.2016) there have been 265 collisions resulting in 406 casualties on the 8 routes chosen for the average speed cameras. Of those casualties, 13 proved fatal and 62 suffered serious or life changing injuries.

The average speed camera systems are used alongside other existing education and engineering solutions. Any existing fixed housings will be removed as part of this process.

How will we know they’re being used?

There will be a significant amount of media coverage and a signage strategy in place to ensure motorists know they’re in the average speed route. All the routes will be installed by the end of 2017 and enforcement will begin soon after the works are completed on each site; the first average speed enforcement likely to start March 2017.

What will the signs look like?

Signing for average speed systems are not a legal requirement but is considered best practice. In Lancashire the signing is consistent with that used on average speed camera systems elsewhere in the UK and meets current guidelines.

What are the cameras?

All average speed camera systems are rigorously tested in order to achieve Home Office Type Approval before they can be used. Following a  tender process Jenoptik won the contract to install Lancashire’s average speed systems and will install SPECS3 cameras in yellow housings. This will be a wireless system allowing greater flexibility and lower costs than older cameras where solid wiring was required.

The cameras are capable of reading number plates in both directions and across more than one lane.  

     http://www.jenoptik.co.uk/product/specs 

What if I get caught?

Motorists detected exceeding the speed limit on the average speed camera routes will be processed in the same way as other speeding offences in Lancashire – some may be eligible for a national speed awareness course or a conditional offer of fixed penalty (currently £100 and 3 penalty points) or for higher speeds the matter may be referred to the Magistrates’ Court.

To see the thresholds for Speed Awareness Courses please click here

Who is responsible for them?

The cameras have been commissioned and funded by the Lancashire Road Safety Partnership and will be enforced by Lancashire Constabulary.

How much did they cost?

The cameras have been installed by the Lancashire Road Safety Partnership and the cost of the scheme over the 5 year contracted period is £2,150,000; this includes all equipment, fully managed installation, off site processing, maintenance and on-going support.

All 8 average speed systems have been financed by the Lancashire Road Safety Partnership and this will continue for the duration of the project; funds are a combination of historical road safety reserves earmarked for this initiative and costs recovered from driver behaviour diversionary courses. 

National figures from the Department for Transport puts the average cost at just more than £2 million per fatal collision and nearly £230,000 per serious collision. 

Are they effective?

There are around 100 permanent average speed camera routes in the UK (Lancashire will have the 100th), safety has consistently improved on a variety of road types using this system in the UK and worldwide. Research by the RAC Foundation showed that the numbers of fatal and serious collisions decreases by around a third after average speed cameras are introduced.

How will you know they are effective?

As part of the Lancashire Road Safety Partnership’s project we have already begun a piece of research to review speed data, traffic flow and casualty information at all 8 of the sites to provide comparisons over time. 
What about the environmental impact?
It is hoped that with improved traffic flow, fewer road closures and slower speeds both noise and pollution will reduce. 
 
Myth Buster

This is just to make money

Any receipts from speeding offence fixed penalties and court fines are paid to HM Treasury’s consolidated fund, not to local police or councils. Average speed camera routes result in strong compliance to the speed limit therefore generate a low number of excess speed notices.

The system will catch too many people.

The camera equipment and signs are conspicuous; the only people detected will be the ones who choose to ignore the speed limit.

What about motorbikes?

The average speed camera system is designed to have flexibility in its operation and is capable of detecting and enforcing speeds for all vehicle types.

What about changing lanes?

The SPECS3 camera system is a multi-lane system capable of monitoring all vehicles regardless of lane changes and direction of travel.

Average speed cameras increase journey time

The majority of people will not see any change in their journey time as speed limits are not changing as a result of the average speed systems. Journey times are more reliable due to smoother traffic flow.
Mobile Phones
A number of people have raised the issue of drivers using their mobile phones and indeed it is recognised locally and nationally as one of the ‘fatal 4’.  A variety of methods are used to detect and deal with phone offences, including officer observations and more recently the use of the yellow mobile enforcement vans to detect drivers not only exceeding the speed limit, but also using mobile phones and not wearing seat belts.
We support national campaigns, aimed at education and enforcement for mobile phone offences and local Neighbourhood Police Teams (NHPTs) are encouraged to get involved.  We accept that people see motorists in their area blatantly using mobile phones and perceive that they ‘never get stopped’.  As with any motoring offence officers cannot be everywhere and day to day are deployed dynamically to ongoing risks and threats arising across the county.  We will continue to encourage NHPTs to deal robustly with these offences and if you consider it is a particular problem in your area we encourage you to discuss this with your NHP officers (local contact information can be found on the Constabulary website http://www.lancashire.police.uk).  Any locations specifically raised have already been forwarded to these teams.  The use of local CCTV to detect offences is impracticable as this would require police officers or staff spending many hours reviewing footage to detect offences.  However, we will always consider its use to corroborate offences already detected or suspected.
 
Enforcement in my area
The scoping of where best to deploy average speed was done using a number of criterion including casualty data, collision data and professional judgement.  We will continue to review the possibility of using average speed on other routes in line with emerging collision trends and casualty data.
However before we invest in further average speed on these routes, through the multi-agency speed tasking group, which takes account of collision and speed data along with community concerns, other interventions maybe considered more appropriate. For example, some roads may already have fixed cameras or may benefit from officer and/or camera van enforcement. There may also be opportunities for engineering improvements which could have the desired effect of lowering speeds.
 
Money/Funding
We are permitted to recover reasonable costs associated with the administration of diversionary courses; from this and through good housekeeping and effective and efficient management of our resources we have been able to identify funds to re-invest into road safety. It is only right that these funds are used as part of achieving our vision of ‘Towards Zero Lancashire’; working towards nobody being killed or seriously injured on our roads.  
If you have other queries please contact info@safe2travel.co.uk