12/15/2005

More funding announced for road safety

Plans to grant local authorities more money and more flexibility to deliver road safety have been announced by Transport Secretary Alistair Darling.

The new plans could see an end to the rapid increase in the number of speed cameras, because the current system of funding them through fines will be ended.

From 2007/08, camera activity and partnerships will be integrated into wider local authority road safety activity and expenditure on safety cameras will cease to be funded through netting-off.

The system will be replaced by a new central fund for road safety, which will provide £110 million per year – an increase from the £93 million currently spent by safety camera partnerships.

Authorities will also be able to use this funding for all types of road safety measures.

The measures also include new requirements to improve the signposting of cameras and a requirement for all local authorities to review the speed limits on their A and B roads by 2011.

The announcement of the new measures coincided with the publication of an independent four-year report into speed cameras.

Mr Darling said: "This report is clear proof that safety cameras save lives. There are hundreds of people alive today who would otherwise be dead.

“But I want cameras to be linked more closely to wider road safety. That is why I am increasing the amount of money available for spending on road safety. In some places, cameras will still be the solution and can be funded through this money. In other places, there will be alternative solutions, which this funding can cover.

“In 2004, the UK had the lowest number on record of people killed in road accidents. We are committed to reducing that number even further.”

(KMcA/SP)

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