One new speed camera in Plymouth set up in a 20mph zone has already caught 1,100 drivers on the first day of its operation. Officials involved in the development of such speed limiting schemes say the technology is vital, urgent and life-saving.
But many angry drivers have branded the cameras as a cash grab.
In an eight week test period before the camera went live, over 23,500 motorists were caught out – a figure branded “troubling” by a police chief.
Similar schemes are being rolled out all over the UK, to combine with a raft of new 20mph zones in towns and residential areas.
Alex Kindred, car insurance expert at Confused.com, said: “Our research shows that almost four in five (79 percent) drivers admit to having broken the speed limit at some point.
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“The respondents are asked loaded questions, the answers are obvious and the councils can go on this.
“There may have been no deaths or accidents ever in the areas.
“It’s shoddy, snidey, nasty and corrupt. A very Blair style approach.
“These people are dictators and should be bloody well removed so we can have councils that actually leave people alone and they do their jobs.”
According to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), a 20mph zone can reduce injury accidents by 60 percent and child injury accidents by 67 percent.
When they were first launched in 1990, road safety publicity messages were being run, with one of the most notable being the “Kill your speed, not a child” campaign.
The lower speed limits are now being trialled around the country, including Birmingham, that hopes that it could reduce road traffic collisions by eight percent.