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Old July 24th, 2010, 11:31 PM   #1
kanterberg
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Speed cameras measuring average speed

I guess it is safe to say that traffic enforcement cameras are here to stay. Nowadays they are present in many countries and used for everything from speed limit enforcement, red light violations to carpool-lanes and automatic number plate recognition.

Sweden has had traffic cameras to enforce speed limits for many years; today more than 700 cameras are in use on over 1900 km of roads. Currently they are all signposted in advance and they are not used at all on motorways.

However, speed cameras that measure average speed have never been introduced here. There was a proposal from the Road Administration last year but the government due to personal integrity concerns dismissed the idea. Measuring the average speed requires taking pictures of ALL cars, not just the ones speeding, and the argument used by the government was that they didn’t want a system were law-abiding drivers were photographed. Personally I believe it had more to do with legal concerns since the driver and not the owner of the car is responsible for traffic violations in Sweden.

My question is this: how common are speed cameras that measure average speeds? I know they are used on motorways in the Netherlands and in the United Kingdom and that France is set to introduce a simular system next year. I have also read that there have been trial projects in Norway (Lillehammer) and in the Czech Republic (Zlíchov ‐ Radlická tunnel). Are they permanent now?

What do you think? Can this type of speed limit enforcement be justified on motorways? Do they pose a threat to personal integrity?


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Old July 24th, 2010, 11:39 PM   #2
ChrisZwolle
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As they are usually used to enforce unnaturally low speed limits on motorways (for example 80 and 100 km/h), most people hate them.

The Italian Tutor system is much better, as they enforce reasonable speed limits (130 km/h). Austria also uses it in some tunnels.
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Old July 24th, 2010, 11:50 PM   #3
g.spinoza
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post

The Italian Tutor system is much better, as they enforce reasonable speed limits (130 km/h). Austria also uses it in some tunnels.
Yes, in Italy we have more or less 2500km of autostrade covered by Tutor (out of 6900km of total autostrade length).

As for privacy concerns, Autostrade per l'Italia in its website says:

Quote:
Un grosso sforzo č stato fatto da Autostrade per l'Italia e dalle Associazioni dei Consumatori al fine di tutelare la privacy dei viaggiatori. Le targhe dei veicoli che rispettano i limiti di velocitŕ vengono immediatamente cancellate e non č inoltre possibile tracciare un veicolo attraverso il Tutor per fini diversi da quelli legati al calcolo della velocitŕ.
Translation
A big effort has been made by Autostrade per l'Italia and by Consumers Associations towards protecting the privacy of the travelers. License plates of vehicles abiding to the speed limits are immediately deleted and there is no possibility to track a vehicle using Tutor for purposes other than the calculation of speed
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Old July 25th, 2010, 02:59 PM   #4
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They're mostly used in the UK on motorways during construction works - the limit is usually 50mph (~80km/h) on motorway roadworks. I find that quite reasonable and they keep the traffic slow smooth and stress free from personal experience.
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Old July 26th, 2010, 03:32 PM   #5
ElviS77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kanterberg View Post
I have also read that there have been trial projects in Norway (Lillehammer) and in the Czech Republic (Zlíchov ‐ Radlická tunnel). Are they permanent now?
It's safe to assume that the Norwegian ones are here to stay... AFAIK, three sections are in operation - rv 3 south of Alvdal (80 kph), E6 Dovreskogen (80 kph) and E18 Bamble (70 kph).
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Old July 26th, 2010, 07:27 PM   #6
Jonesy55
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I've only seen average speed cameras temporarily on sections with roadworks and I don't have a problem with that.

If they were used routinely to enforce the standard 70mph motorway limit though there would be uproar as the normal cruising speed for 60% of cars on the motorway network is 80-85mph.
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Old July 26th, 2010, 07:30 PM   #7
kanterberg
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ElviS77 View Post
It's safe to assume that the Norwegian ones are here to stay... AFAIK, three sections are in operation - rv 3 south of Alvdal (80 kph), E6 Dovreskogen (80 kph) and E18 Bamble (70 kph).
That's interesting. Who is legally responsible for speeding violations in Norway, the driver or the owner of the car?
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Old July 27th, 2010, 12:26 AM   #8
ElviS77
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Originally Posted by kanterberg View Post
That's interesting. Who is legally responsible for speeding violations in Norway, the driver or the owner of the car?
The driver. That's why Norwegian cameras take frontal shots including the driver. However, not divulging who drove the car if it wasn't you, is seriously frowned upon and I, as far as I know, you will be held responsible. But I am not certain about the finer points of the law here, I only know that it's rather difficult to get the fine to go away...

I did, though. One day last summer I was surprisd to find a citation in my letterbox. I had alledgedly done 92 kph in an 80 zone somewhere in western Norway. As I live in Oslo and hadn't driven the road in question in more than a decade, I was somewhat suprised. But also a bit stressed out, since I'd been away on holiday and thus was a bit late, complaint-wise...

I did however notice that the licence plate number stated wasn't from any car I'd ever owned. When I also realised that about 400 people could confirm my whereabouts on the time in question, I felt confident enough to write a slightly sarcastic e-mail to the police explaining that it couldn't possibly be me they were looking for. The next day, I found an apologetic and somewhat funny mail in my inbox: it turned out to be a rental car hired by a person with the same first name and date of birth as me...
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