Bristol mayor considers switching speed cameras back on

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The mayor of Bristol has said he is in talks with police to consider switching speed cameras back on in the city.

Fixed speed cameras and cameras monitoring junctions were switched off in 2011 after the government stopped funding the Safety Camera Partnership.

Mayor George Ferguson said he was also in discussion with the Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens.

He said: "We will be having a comprehensive discussion about the best way forward."

Should the cameras be switched back on it would require the help of Avon and Somerset Police who would have to process any fines.

Mr Ferguson said that cameras monitoring traffic lights could also be reactivated.

'Agreement'

He added: "I'm very anxious that we do concentrate on making these junctions safer and if cameras play a part in that, then we will certainly agree with the police where and when they can and cannot be switched on."

When asked about the funding, he said: "I don't think anybody makes any money out of them, but they don't lose a lot because of the fines that come the police's way.

Start Quote

It's a matter of having an agreement, we don't want to be spending the money in order for the police to collect the fines”

End Quote Mayor George Ferguson

"It's a matter of having an agreement, we don't want to be spending the money in order for the police to collect the fines."

Mayor Ferguson said a decision should be made within the next six months.

Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens said she had not personally held discussions with Mr Ferguson but added that there were "conversations going on" between the council and constabulary.

"At certain places - such as some traffic junctions - where there is evidence to support these cameras being turned on then we should discuss that," she said.

"There's no extra money so it's a discussion that we'll have to have. If money is spent in this direction then less money will be spent elsewhere so it'll have to be based on evidence."

Other councils in the Avon and Somerset area - which used to jointly run the Safety Camera Partnership with Bristol - said they are not considering a similar move.

Somerset County Council said talks had taken place but the cost would be "prohibitive". North Somerset said talks had been held over reactivating one camera but the idea was rejected.

Bath and North East Somerset Council and South Gloucestershire said they were not considering turning any cameras back on.

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