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PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2004 13:17 
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Comment: The article says "The vans have been paid for using cash collected from fines paid by speeding motorists." but surely they mean "the vans WILL be paid for using...". From what I've read the 'business case' has to be approved at the start of the year and sufficient funds collected to pay off the expenditure.

12:00 - 13 April 2004

Road safety experts in Staffordshire have doubled their fleet of mobile camera units in the fight against speeding motorists. Two extra state-of-the-art vans, costing £60,000, will patrol high-priority zones on the lookout for law-breakers.

Officials at the Staffordshire Casualty Reduction Partnership (SCRP), who operate the county's 240-plus fixed cameras and mobile units, hope tougher enforcement will further reduce car smashes in the coming year.

During 2002, 52 people were killed and 414 people seriously injured on the county's roads. Figures for 2003 are not yet available.

The partnership's existing two mobile camera units, which bear safety camera symbols and reflective markings and contain the latest hi-tech equipment, were launched to target accident blackspots last July.

A SCRP spokesman said: "The addition of two vans means we will be able to reduce further speeding and reduce road casualties.

"They will ensure more of a presence on Staffordshire's roads - something which is always welcomed by residents who often have to cope with speeding cars and dangerous roads."

The vans have been paid for using cash collected from fines paid by speeding motorists.

It comes as the number of drivers attending a pioneering speed awareness course, launched last April by the SCRP, topped 2,000.

Altogether, 126 courses have been held, giving those snared by roadside traps the opportunity to avoid a £60 fine and three penalty points on their licence - often leading to higher motor insurance premiums.

The intensive one-day programme is aimed at making them safer behind the wheel instead of being prosecuted for breaking the law in 30mph zones. It is only the second of its kind in the UK.

Project manager Tim Roberts said: "We have had good feedback from the people attending the course who as a result of attending believe it has changed their driving habits for the better.

"With a mixture of education and enforcement we hope to reduce casualties on Staffordshire's roads and educate drivers so they can avoid a potential crash situation."

Figures show motorists in Staffordshire stumped up a total of £1.8 million during the financial year 2002/03.

The partnership, which includes police, courts, councils, ambulance and health authorities, keeps the money it needs and any surplus goes to the Treasury.

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