Trials for digital speed camera with no flashIt can capture driver's face and number plate

25 May 2007

Trials have begun of a new type of speed camera that does not flash and requires no film, it was revealed today.

Developed by a UK firm, the camera can photograph drivers' faces as well as their number plates.

If approved by the Home Office the camera could be used nationwide but the new device was today branded a mere 'money spinner' by an anti-camera group.

Made by Truvelo of Brentford, west London, the device is being tested on the A4 Great West Road in west London in conjunction with Transport for London (TfL).

The camera has already 'caught' a number of drivers, but no action has been taken as this is only a trial.

Paul Smith, founder of the anti-speed camera group Safe Speed told London's Evening Standard: 'The fact that you do not know that you have been flashed adds more uncertainty to the driver's mind and uncertainty is never a good thing for safety.

'If it is to be a deterrent it is better to know where you stand. The camera is aimed at making lots of money.'

No fines yet

A TfL spokesperson said: 'Since April 2007, the London Safety Camera Partnership has been facilitating the trial of a new type of digital speed and red light camera on the A4. As it is a trial no fines are being issued due to this camera.

'The Home Office requires cameras to be trialled and to be approved by them before they can be used to enforce traffic law. The camera at the A4 site is therefore not currently acting as an enforcement camera.

'The number of people killed or seriously injured on London's roads has been reduced by 41 per cent since the mid to late 1990s. Safety cameras have played an important role, along with other road safety measures such as 20mph zones, advertising and educational initiatives.'

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