Speed cameras save 800 lives a year. The Daily Mail still doesn’t care

An investigation by the RAC has found that on average deaths and serious injuries were down by a quarter in sites where speed cameras were located.

An investigation by the RAC has found that on average deaths and serious injuries were down by a quarter in sites where speed cameras were located.

Analysis of data from 551 fixed speed cameras in nine areas found that on average the number of fatal and serious collisions in the vicinity fell by 27 per cent after the installation of cameras.

There was also an average reduction of 15 per cent in personal injury collisions in the vicinity of the 551 cameras.

The research also found, however, that in 21 camera sites the number of collisions appears to have risen – risen enough, according to the RAC, to warrant an investigation in case the installation of cameras has contributed to the increases.

In sum, then, in an analysis of 551 camera sites, the average number of serious collisions decreased by a quarter. In just 21 sites (four per cent of the total), collisions went up, whether because of the installation of speed cameras or not – we don’t yet know

How would any responsible, let alone honest, person interpret such data, then? Would they, as the director of the RAC has done, conclude that “without speed cameras there would be around 800 more people killed or seriously injured each year“?

Or would they instead single out the four per cent of camera sites where accidents did go up and make that the story – ignoring the 800 lives saved across the other 96 per cent of camera sites?

Here’s how today’s Daily Mail interpreted the RAC data.

Daily Mail speed cameras

What an absolute disgrace.

Like this article? Sign up to Left Foot Forward's weekday email for the latest progressive news and comment - and support campaigning journalism by making a donation today.