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Speed camera officer busts 'money making' myth and explains why cameras are placed where they are

Anna Verdon

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Speed camera officer busts 'money making' myth and explains why cameras are placed where they are

A speed camera officer has revealed some of the biggest myths around speeding fines - including the widely held belief that they're just a way for local police forces to make money.

Gareth Thomas, an ex-cop, also highlighted some common driving habits that could land you with a fine.

The first myth he wants to bust is that speed camera have to be clearly visible by law.

Thomas said this isn’t true and there are no laws around visibility when it comes to catching someone speeding.

Speaking to North Wales Live, he said: “Legally, we don’t have to be visible. I could camouflage myself if I want to, but it’s all about being fair, education and preventing an accident.”

Gareth Thomas is a former police officer. Credit: Daily Post Wales
Gareth Thomas is a former police officer. Credit: Daily Post Wales

He added that being noticeable can be beneficial as it can help put people off wanting to speed.

Another myth that many believe is that cameras are just a way for the police to make money.

However, any money made from speeding fines is passed on to the Treasury, rather than remaining with forces and safety partners.

And, if you’ve ever felt peckish while behind the wheel, it’s best to avoid eating until you’re out the car as it’s actually against the law to eat while driving.

That’s because, if you get distracted, you can be pulled up for careless driving, Gareth said.

But there are many other reasons you can get fined by speed van officers.

Some are more obvious such as not wearing a seatbelt or using your mobile phone.

But there are some other factors that many may not be aware of.

Speed camera do not need to be visible. Credit: Daily Post Wales
Speed camera do not need to be visible. Credit: Daily Post Wales

For instance, some people believe that you can only be fined if you’re travelling in the same direction as the officer is facing.

But this is false. Gareth said: “If you’re exceeding the speed limit – whether you’re driving in the same or opposite direction to the van – you can expect a speeding ticket.”

And if you think you’re being helpful in warning other road users of a speeding van by flashing your lights, you could also be in breach of the law.

That’s because it’s classed as an offence under the Police Act to wilfully obstruct a constable in the execution of his/her duty.

Although Gareth added that this isn’t something he is particularly bothered about and said: “I just want to educate people and the van to act as a speed deterrent.”

Featured Image Credit: Daily Post Wales

Topics: Cars, Crime, UK News

Anna Verdon
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