UK drivers have been hit with almost two million speeding tickets over the last year, according to new research into the country’s most active speed cameras.
Speeding is the most common motoring offence in the country and new figures obtained from 36 of the country’s 46 police forces reveal that 1.74m speeding offences were detected in the 12 months from April 2021 to March 2022. However, they also show that the majority of drivers clocked breaking the limited escaped prosecution.
Of the 1.74m, 457,232 drivers were hit with a standad Fixed Penalty Notice, which carried a fine of £100 a fine and three penalty points on their licence. Of the remaining 1.2m, 698,115 drivers opted to take a speed awareness course, while the rest were either taken to court due to the severity of the offence or police were unable to trace the driver.
The figures were revealed as part research by comparison site Confused looking into the country’s busiest speed cameras. It discovered that in the last 12 months one camera on the outskirts of London has led to almost 50,000 Notices of Intended Prosecution (NIP) being issued. The device on the eastbound A40 issued 49,050 tickets, more than double the next busiest camera.
The second most active camera was on the stretch of M25 in Surrey between junctions 7 and 16, where 23,134 NIPs were generated in one year, almost 5,000 more than the third busiest camera, located between junctions 20 and 19 on the M4 near Bristol. The figures show that busiest cameras are spread around the country, with devices in Merseyside, Kent and Warwickshire also featuring in the top 10.
It is 30 years since the first Gatso roadside cameras were first introduced to the UK. Since then muliple other types of static speed cameras have been introduced, along with mobile camera vans and average speed cameras. The Confused study suggests that fixed speed cameras are still the most common way drivers are caught.
It questioned drivers on their experiences of and atttitudes towards speeding. It found 44% had been caught speeding at some point. Of those 29% were caught by a fixed camera, 26% by a mobile camera and 23% by an average speed zone. Just 10% were stopped on the road by police officers and only 6% were caught by on handheld speed guns.
Among those caught speeding, it found almost a third (31%) claimed they didn’t realise they were over the speed limit. However, more than 1 in 5 (22%) said they knowingly broke the speed limit because the road was clear and 17% said they were speeding because they just wanted to get somewhere faster.
Alex Kindred, car insurance expert at Confused.com, commented: “Although some motorists might feel that speed limits are an inconvenience, they’re there to ensure our roads are safe for all. If caught speeding, motorists could land themselves with a fine, points on their licence or even a driving ban. A speeding fine or points added on to your licence could also lead to an increase on your car insurance costs.”
Full list of UK’s 10 busiest speed cameras in 2021/22
|Site||No. of intended prosecutions||Police Constabulary|
|A40 between Long Dr and Wellands Gdns E/B||49,050||Metropolitan|
|M25 Junction 7-16, Surrey||23,134||Surrey|
|M4 Junction 20-19, Bristol||18,317||Avon & Somerset|
|A5460 Narborough Road, Leicester, Jnc with Fullhurst Avenue||16,634||Leicestershire|
|M6 Junction 1-4 (Northbound and Southbound)||15,410||Warwickshire|
|Garston Way/ Dock Road, Liverpool||15,295||Merseyside|
|M5 Junction 4a-6, Birmingham||15,062||West Mercia|
|A282 Dartford Tunnel Approach Road||14,423||Kent|
|Lewes Road, Brighton, Jnc with Coldean Lane||14,172||Sussex|
|M6 Junction 7 & 8 N/B, Birmingham||12,762||West Midlands|