Feeds

Speed-cam fines topped out in 2005

Strangely, UK.gov eased off in 2006

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

New falling motor-crime figures for 2005 published by the UK Ministry of Justice (MoJ? MinJ?) could be interpreted in a number of ways.

The Times and the RAC Foundation are pretty sure what they think.

"Public outrage leads to first fall in number of speed camera fines" runs the Thunderer headline.

“This shows the outcry by millions of drivers has finally paid off," the RAC's Edmund King told the tabloidsheet.

"There is no doubt that enforcement was getting out of hand, particularly with the use of speed cameras.

“The authorities have finally realised that showing a small degree of flexibility can be more effective than huge numbers of fines, even though they are making less money.”

The main number behind this is a 2 per cent drop in speed-cam fines during 2005, from 1.91 million to 1.87 million.

"The number is likely to have continued falling in 2006 because the policy that allowed police to keep a proportion of the fines to pay for more cameras ended in April of that year," says the Times.

So, just to be clear. Public outrage led the government to restrict cameras-begetting-cameras in 2006 - but the total number of fines actually fell in 2005, while the cams were still merrily breeding away.

We don't yet know what effect - if any - the outrage-driven policy change may have had. We do know that even with free camera growth, fines topped out anyway.

It's much the same story with parking fines, which saw a 3.5 per cent drop in 2005, a year before local ticketing targets were abolished by central government.

Is all this a case of public outrage rolling back over-aggressive enforcement, or a savage automated crackdown cowing the population into submission? Or even - as the government would no doubt contend - a case of drivers finally beginning to obey the democratically-enacted laws of the land after effective enforcement came in (paid for mostly by dangerous criminals rather than law-abiding citizens)?

Or is the law just an ass, sometimes? Perhaps 30mph in built-up areas is fair enough, though there are those who say it should be slower still; but is a 70mph cap really required on motorways? The Germans certainly don't think so.

You decide; the Times bit is here. And don't forget the less-visible privacy and surveillance issues attendant on the still-rapidly-growing nationwide ANPR numberplate-cam networks. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Hello, police, El Reg here. Are we a bunch of terrorists now?
Do Brits risk arrest for watching beheading video nasty? We asked the fuzz
Detroit losing MILLIONS because it buys CHEAP BATTERIES – report
Man at hardware store was right: name brands DO last longer
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
UK government accused of hiding TRUTH about Universal Credit fiasco
'Reset rating keeps secrets on one-dole-to-rule-them-all plan', say MPs
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Yes, but what are your plans if a DRAGON attacks?
Local UK gov outs most ridiculous FoI requests...
EU justice chief blasts Google on 'right to be forgotten'
Don't pretend it's a freedom of speech issue – interim commish
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
This'll end well: US govt says car-to-car jibber-jabber will SAVE lives
Department of Transportation starts cogs turning for another wireless comms standard
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.