Hypothecation 2
Latest figures show that the speed camera hypothecation scheme is failing spectacularly to improve road safety - in fact it's clearly making matters worse.


The DfT has published part year KSI statistics for most police force areas. (click here)

We immediately looked at the figures for the "8 trial counties" in the speed camera hypothecation scheme and found no significant improvement in accident figures despite a significant national background improvement.

A very worrying trend is emerging. When counties join the hypothecation scheme they seem to have a good year. Perhaps it's a shock effect. But groups of counties sorted by date of joining the scheme show very poor results - well under UK trend for subsequent years. We believe that this is the consequence of fatally flawed road safety policies beginning to bite.

A further very worrying effect is the slowing of the trend in KSI reductions. As the flawed approach to road safety spreads more widely we see a reduction in the national trend - so we're comparing the effect of a flawed policy nationally with the effects of an aggressive and flawed policy in specific regions.


This is the scheme where they form unaccountable scamera quangos to waste the fine money on more greed cameras. Read about hypothecation (here). In road safety terms, with most casualty figures issued annually the scheme is young. The first areas to join the scheme did so in 2000. 2000 seems like quite a while ago, but of course we only have 2 full years' figures since then - barely enough time for things to settle down.

However with the part year figures just issued the results are so awful that it's high time to scrap the dangerous scheme.

8 trial counties
8 trial counties KSI change National KSI National KSI Change
2000 7,559 - 41,564 -
2001 7,173 -5.1% 40,537 -2.5%
2002 7,137 -0.5% 39,407 -2.8%
2002.5 7,106 -0.4% 38,449 -2.4%

As this scheme spreads, there is every reason to expect equally bad results everywhere.

KSI Graphs for Hypothecation scheme counties

We've use the very latest part year figures plus older data to construct the following three graphs for hypothecation region KSI performance. Note that in every case the latest hypothecation region figures are worse than the national trend. (i.e. the slope is shallower). This means that, on average, hypothecation counties are improving more slowly than the national average.

The first graph adds the figures for the 8 counties that joined in 2000 to the 6 counties that joined in 2001. Year 0 is the year of joining. Note that the latest figures show the trend to be worse than national average in the hypothecation counties.

Graph 2 shows the latest figures for the 8 trial counties. Their achievement is way below the national average, but remarkably consistent for the last two sets of figures.

Graph 3 show the 6 counties who joined in 2001. Year 0 is the year of joining. Note that the latest figures indicate poorer than average improvement - admittedly not by much in this case - but then don't forget speed camera proponents insist that they makes the roads safer. That's clearly rubbish. On the evidence of Graph 3, we'd say "no effect".

But of course all the cameras nationally, together with the loss of police patrols and all the distortions of fact and priority are having a bad effect on the national figures we're using as a baseline.

Data used etc.

The basic data source is the DfT Publication "main results" issued annually. Since the DfT do not have all the recent years available from their web site we have gathered together the last six copies (1997 to 2002) for download. (click here)

The latest part year data referred to above is (here)

Our spreadsheet with all the data and analysis is available (here)


It looks like we might pay attention for a little while when the one trick pony comes to town. Unsurprisingly we soon get bored and disinterested and try to get on with our lives. The process of working around the presence of the one trick pony tends to make us less effective at avoiding accidents and so in subsequent years the one trick pony brings death, misery and serious injury.

"Speed Kills" road safety policy and speed cameras are very dangerous and must be scrapped as soon as possible. We must get back to the policies that gave us the safest roads in the world in the first place.

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Let's make speed cameras as unacceptable as drink driving

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Created 7/12/2003. Last update 7/03/2004