More safety cameras to target speeding North Yorkshire motorists

Speed cameras in Harrogate
Speed cameras in Harrogate

Speeding Harrogate motorists will be targeted by an extra six safety camera vehicles located around the county.

North Yorkshire's Police and Crime Commissioner, Julia Mulligan, announced there would now be 12 vehicles in a bid to increase road safety and help tackle rural crime.

The six new vehicles will be smaller than the current vans, making them especially suitable for deployment in rural locations, and carry Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology.

Mrs Mulligan said she hoped the additional vehicles would help tackle rural and cross-border crime, as well as raising police visibility.

Safety camera vans were introduced across North Yorkshire in 2010 with the number of fatalities reducing by a third and serious injuries by 20 per cent during this time.

Deputy Chief Constable Tim Madgwick, Chair of 95 Alive Road Safety Partnership welcomed the announcement and said it would improve the safety of North Yorkshire's roads.

He said: "We have fortunately seen the number of fatalities and casualties on our roads reduce in the past year and the new additions to the safety camera fleet will help us to reduce these numbers further.

"The fact we can extend the reassurance of the safety cameras to the more rural communities of our region is great news.

"With the smaller vans being able to be deployed to those more remote areas and equipped with ANPR capability, not only can we increase the safety of those rural routes we can police our borders more effectively against cross border crime and successfully protect those more vulnerable due to their location, from travelling criminals.”

The announcement comes after Mrs Mulligan published the first annual report into the use of safety camera vehicles in the county.

The report revealed that North Yorkshire had one of the highest accident rates in the country with 44 people dying on the roads last year.

A total of 40,377 violations were captured during 2014/15 with 34,419 drivers attending an £85 speed awareness course, more than 2,800 a month.

The vans generated £1,049,000 through these courses, as well as fixed penalty fines, with the income used to fund the £886,000 needed for the additional vehicles.

Mrs Mulligan explained that the surplus would be strictly ring-fenced for other road safety initiatives as this was issue raised most often by concerned residents.

She said: "These new vehicles will mean we can better improve road safety, continue to see the numbers of people hurt or killed reduce and support even more communities who have road safety concerns.

“Fitting the vehicles with ANPR, and basing them in our rural areas, means we can also better disrupt travelling criminals by tracking their movements and preventing crime.

“Given the scale of the road network in North Yorkshire and the still too many people who die on our roads, as well as those drivers causing misery to others, I am very pleased to be able to invest in this important area of education and enforcement.”