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Unmanned CCTV cameras to enforce motoring offences

CCTV system in East London to crack down on motorists who make illegal turns or stop in yellow-box junctions.

A CCTV enforcement system is being used in east London as part of an attempt to stop drivers from making illegal turns or ignoring restricted access signs. Redbridge council has placed cameras, which work without human intervention, at four trouble spots.

The council’s environment, transportation, and crime committee head, Shoaib Patel, said: “The system was installed to counter the high number of drivers that were ignoring the traffic restrictions that were in place, causing severe safety hazards to pedestrians and other drivers.”

Mr Patel added: “The system is working well and we have captured a number of vehicles committing serious traffic contraventions, which is promising.” 

Objections have already been levied at the system. AA president Edmund King said: “We are concerned that this automated system is more about harvesting motorists for money and profit than deterring bad driver behaviour. There needs to be the safeguard that, if this system starts fining drivers on an industrial scale, an analysis of the problem junctions takes place. The ticket haul may be partly down to the road layout.”

Mr King added that, if signing is inadequate, “local drivers may learn to be wary but outsiders may be caught time after time for mistakes, minor infringements or circumstances outside their control, such as making way for emergency vehicles.”

The government told councils to stop using CCTV to fine motorists in August 2013. Transport minister Eric Pickles said it was unacceptable for councils to bend “the law to fill their coffers with taxpayers’ cash”.

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