Hemel speed camera is ‘third worst in country’ for braking blackspots

Speed Cameras at Piccotts End, Hemel Hempstead
Speed Cameras at Piccotts End, Hemel Hempstead

Speed cameras are creating ‘dangerous’ accident blackspots because drivers are braking hard to avoid getting a ticket according to a new survey – and a camera in Hemel is third worst on the list.

The Speed Cameras Don’t Work report revealed that the camera on the A4146 Leighton Buzzard Road encourages ‘poor driver behaviour’, coming in behind only two cameras in London and Greater Manchester.

Close to the camera, just past Piccotts End, 31 cases of hard braking were recorded within 50m compared to just four incidences within 100m – an eightfold increase.

The camera, which records motorists travelling south, was installed in 2003 and is situated where the speed limit changes from 60mph to 40mph.

A spokesman for Herts County Council said: “Hertfordshire’s Safety Camera Partnership between Hertfordshire County Council and Hertfordshire Constabulary works with the sole purpose of keeping people safe on our roads.

“We install safety cameras in locations where there is a history of fatal or serious collisions and where camera enforcement is the correct measure to address the causes of those collisions.

“We have evidence to show that where our cameras have been placed, the number of people that are killed or seriously injured in collisions has been significantly reduced.”

Since 1990, there have been 47 Personal Injury Collision (PIC) and 13 Killed or Seriously Injured (KSI) incidents on that stretch of road by the speed camera.

In October 2001, an average speed check showed that 67.1 per cent of motorists were exceeding the speed limit.

In the most recent set of data from May 2013, only 4.9 per cent were found to be speeding.