New figures from police in Lancashire have underlined how a small but, frankly, stupid number of people are still ignoring speed limits in roadworks and driving at ludicrous speeds.
A 50mph limit is in place on the carriageway north of Preston while a new bridge is installed. The limit is enforced by Jenoptik average speed cameras.
But the Lancashire Road Safety partnership has spotted that, while most people stick to the limit through the average speed scheme, some are not only breaking that limit but hugely breaking the normal motorway limit too, with one person being clocked at 111mph.
“Since the project started in April hundreds of drivers have been detected speeding through the roadworks – one driver was clocked at 111mph which is simply shocking,” commented Highways England project manager Chris Riley. “Drivers are speeding through the roadworks just to save a few seconds – the cameras caught more than 750 offenders just in the last week. We are urging drivers to think about their own safety and the safety of other motorway users and to slow down. We only use temporary speed limits in roadworks for safety reasons. The temporary bridge support is well protected but a very high-speed collision with the propping system could cause it to collapse – drivers are dicing with death.”
Interestingly, because of the scale of the issue, electronic signs are being installed in the roadworks to publicise the number of prosecutions.
“I am both shocked and disappointed by the number of motorists exceeding the 50 mph temporary limit and at some of the high speeds being detected by the average speed cameras,” added Lara Jones, Lancashire Police safer roads unit manager. “Since the cameras went live we have continued to see a large number of vehicles driving in excess of 80 mph with the highest average speeds being 99 mph and 111 mph; these drivers will be required to attend court. Motorists exceeding the speed limit are putting the safety of other road users and the highways engineers who are carrying out this essential work at risk and we urge drivers to comply with the temporary limit, it is there for a reason”.
Average speed cameras do, though, remain popular with most drivers, with a recent survey by the RAC suggesting the majority of drivers want more such enforcement on motorways.
(Picture – Jenoptik)