10 speed camera myths you heard and have probably always believed

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Certain myths about speed cameras have been doing the rounds for years.

From which ones are "turned off" and how "far over the limit you need to be to get caught", it is likely you have heard of at least one that you now believe to be true.

Of course speed cameras and other road safety measures are there for a very important reason.

Speed is a key risk factor in road traffic injuries, influencing both the risk of a crash as well as the severity of the injuries that result from crashes.

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So with that in mind it is good to put to bed any of the myths surrounding speed cameras and iron out which are true and false to ensure safety on the roads.

Last year road safety charity Brake released a list of information about speed cameras to educate drivers on what is true and what isn't.

Here we remind ourselves of what they said and what you need to know.

"Not all speed cameras work, some are switched off"

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TRUE

A spokesman for Brake said: “Various Freedom of Information requests have revealed that some speed cameras are not fully operational in the UK.

“Brake fully supports the use of speed cameras, and would encourage the return to use of any cameras that have been turned off. Speed cameras are proven to reduce speeding, and can catch far higher numbers of speeding drivers than traffic police with mobile cameras."

"You have to be speeding at least 10% over the limit plus 2mph, to get caught"

FALSE

The law states that a driver can receive a speeding ticket as soon as they exceed the speed limit on a road, even if that is only by 1mph.

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However, guidance provided by the NPCC (National Police Chiefs Council, formally ACPO, Association of Chief Police Officers), suggests that officers do not seek prosecution of a driver until they have exceeded the speed limit by 10%, plus 2mph.

"If you drive really fast, you won’t trigger the camera"

FALSE

This is completely wrong. The only way to avoid triggering the camera is to stick within the speed limit.

"Speed cameras must be painted yellow to be legal"

FALSE

The Government wants all speed cameras in England painted yellow. But if you’re caught on a grey one before that happens, tough – the offence is still valid.

"Average speed cameras don't really work and that's why some people ignore them"

FALSE

The spokesman for Brake said: “Average speed cameras are an effective way to prevent dangerous driver behaviour.

“They are particularly beneficial as they enforce limits over a longer stretch of road, preventing law-breaking drivers from being able to speed up again immediately after passing a camera.

You must be notified within a certain amount of time for it to be valid

TRUE

Brake said a driver caught by a speed camera, rather than a police officer, must be sent a Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP) within 14 days.

The notice goes to the individual the vehicle is registered to.

You can request a speed awareness course

FALSE

Those eligible for a course will be notified by police. If you haven't been offered one, then you don't qualify.

You can do a speed awareness course more than once

TRUE

Drivers caught speeding for a second time may be able to do a second course, depending on the severity of the offence. But this can't be within three years of the first speed awareness course.

If you get a speed awareness course, you don't have to declare it on your insurance

FALSE

Brake says: “Drivers who fail to reveal that they have undertaken a speed awareness course, who then later make a claim to their insurance provider, may find that their policy is invalid.

"Information on whether a driver has taken a speed awareness course is held by local police forces."

You can even get caught on a bicycle or horse

FALSE

“Whilst it is unlikely that a cyclist, or other road user on non-motorised transport, would be able to reach the necessary speeds to be above the limit, the law holds that legislation around speed limits covers only motor or mechanically propelled vehicles."

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