Brandwood forum asks why were the cameras turned off before digital replacement?
Plans are now in place to go out to market to procure new digital camera technology to replace old ‘wet film’ safety cameras.
Birmingham City Council, working alongside Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council and West Midlands Police (WMP) will be introducing new digital speed cameras – up to seven in Birmingham and up to three in Solihull with a further one average speed enforcement unit each – replacing existing obsolete units that were turned off in April 2013.
WMP took the decision to turn off the ‘wet film’ fixed-point speed cameras in April 2013, relying on mobile technology until such time as a suitable digital solution could be found.
The pilot costing Birmingham up to £600,000 and Solihull a further £400,000 is also backed by new West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson and will enable the road safety benefits arising from speed camera installations to continue into the future, which otherwise would not be practical or cost-effective with the older and outdated technology.
Cllr James McKay, Cabinet Member for Social Cohesion, Equalities and Community Safety at Birmingham City Council, said: “Road accidents continue to affect too many residents and visitors to the city – eight people are injured every day, another is seriously injured and every fortnight we suffer one death.
“These road accidents are often devastating and tragic consequences for those involved as well as their family and friends.
“This pilot will help make roads safer and provide the police and local councils with data that will help inform any potential roll out of more cameras in the future.”
It is anticipated that subject to a suitable technology partner being identified, the cameras would go live in August 2015, for the pilot which would conclude in April 2017 – ahead of possible further extensions to the scheme in the autumn of that year.
Cllr Tahir Ali, Cabinet Member for Development, Transport and the Economy at Birmingham City Council, added: Cllr Tahir Ali, Cabinet Member for Development, Transport and the Economy at Birmingham City Council, added: “Beyond the tragic consequences for families affected, these reported road traffic collisions also cost over £220million each year to the Birmingham economy.
“Collisions inevitably add to congestion, causing delays and disruption to road users, not only on the road on which the collisions take place, but also to people in the surrounding area.
“Therefore, it is only right we look at how we can reintroduce speed cameras to our roads, because the positive impact they have for urban mobility should not be ignored.”
Note to Editors
1. The locations of the proposed cameras will be determined once all bids from suppliers have been considered. They will be selected based upon factors including known local problems with speeding motorists and accident history.
For more media information please contact Kris Kowalewski on 0121 303 3621