Do you have a burning question regarding UK speed cameras? The speed camera FAQ's answers the most commonly asked questions:
‣Can a motorcyclist traveling towards a camera be prosecuted, as it's number plate would not be visible to the camera until it passed the camera, by which time the motorcycle would be travelling at well below the speed limit?
‣If I was travelling in the left hand lane, doing 30mph in a 40mph zone in a queue of traffic and a car comes up in the right lane speeding past and sets off the camera, how do they know who was speeding, does it record both speeds?
‣Can anyone give me a simple yes or no. I was flashed by a camera in Moodisburn, near Glasgow. I was on opposite side of the road travelling towards the camera. There is a central reservation between myself and the camera. The camera is NOT on central reservation. Can I be prosecuted?
‣I wanted to ask if a yellow speed camera affects the opposite lane to the lane where the yellow box is by and has markings on. So if I am driving in the opposite lane as oncoming traffic and there is no box positioned next to my lane and nor any speed markings, will the speed box affect my lane? Or only the lane it is next to and has markings on.
‣A motorbike went through lights before me, speeding. Moments after, the camera flashed as I went through (not speeding). I am concerned that it may be me who is fined despite the fact that it wasn't actually me who was speeding.
If you would like to read comments from UK motorists relating to speed cameras click here.
Learn more the different types of speed cameras such as Gatso, Truvelo, SPECS, Hadecs3 and more via our Speed Camera Guide.
The short answer is yes.
However, it depends on the type of camera and whether it is calibrated to target motorists on the opposite side of the road.
If you can send a photo to us of the camera (as it currently appear) and photo of road layout/approach to camera, we'll be able to confirm which lane/side of road is enforced by the speed camera.
Speed cameras can be sited on any and all classes of UK roads.
From October 2016 the government has pledged to make ALL speed cameras yellow in colour.
To aid your driving you might like to consider buying a speed camera detector, for more information please see Speed Camera Detector Buyer's Guide.
Your local council or authority should be able to confirm this information to you.
Increasingly, Police forces across the UK are switching these so called motorway 'variable speed cameras' on outside of times when they are not enforcing a lowered variable speed limit of for example 50mph in heavy traffic.
Bedfordshire Police chief was the first to suggest their use 24/7 on motorways to enforce the national speed limit of 70mph.
It depends on the speed camera type, and it also depends on the speed threshold that the camera is set to.
For example if a road has a 20mph enforced speed limit and is covered by a Gatso speed camera, then that camera could be set to trigger at 24mph. So in answer to your question, the answer is false.
For example a Gatso speed camera could be sited on the near side or the off side of the road. Depending upon how the Gatso camera is calibrated it could target vehicles on either side of the road, but not both at the same time.
It would depend on the two things:
1. the direction of camera
2. the camera that is use
Truvelo speed cameras for instance capture oncoming vehicles.
Gatso, SpeedCurb and Red Light cameras are among a few cameras that all point at the rear of a vehilcle. However, and depending where in the UK you live/drive there are an increasing number of forward facing cameras namely Truvelo, SPECS and VECTOR. Why? Simply because they also record and capture who was actually driving at the time of an offence.
It will GREATLY depend on the speed camera system, however if for example it was a Gatso speed camera.
Gatso speed cameras use two methods to capture and record speeding motorists.
1. The first is via the cameras technology. For example when a motorist/vehicle passes a Gatso speed camera too fast the Gatso's radar technology is triggered to take the necessary photo(s).
2. The second is to use the white markings on the road. The Gatso camera's two photos in quick succession are taken. Using the white markings on the road, the vehicles speed can also be calculated.
The captured evidence by the speed camera would prove who was or wasn't speeding.
We don't yet know what these cameras are called or how they work. It certainly looks like the cameras flash is located on top, with the lense/camera equipment housed within the main unit. Do you know what these cameras are called, who makes them and how they work? If can help please contact us.
A motorist replies...
Just regarding the speed camera on your FAQs with the flash unit mounted overhead, that is a REDFLEX dual redlight/speed camera. Uses radar technology I believe like HADECS 3. Very clever kit indeed. There is one that monitors the red lights into the Dartford crossing.
It depends on the speed camera in question, however for most fixed point speed cameras, e.g. Gatso or Truvelo it's down to the lines in the road to provide further evidence of who was actually speeding when passing a speed camera.
The government announced in November 2015 that ALL grey speed cameras sited on England's motorways and major truck roads will be painted yellow before October 2016. That's the reason why you're seeing some yellow and some that are still grey.
While the Snooper 4ZERO's radar detector will let you know which Gatso speed cameras are live and working. It is impossible to know whether Truvelo, Truvelo D-Cam, VECTOR, SPECS and many other camera systems are operational or not.
This will ONLY be known by the Police/company operator. A freedom of information (FOI) request may yield the information you seek?
The black board with orange lights in each corner in the centre of the image is used as a motorway display sign e.g. Fog, 50mph, etc. It is not a speed camera.
To give you a yes or no answer, we'd need to see a photo of the speed camera.
Some speed cameras like the Truvelo operate forward facing, while others like the Gatso are rear facing to the target/speeding vehicle. Without seeing a photo of the camera and it's set up our answer to you would be 50/50.
It is possible for speed cameras to be on the opposite side of the road or carriageway and be calibrated to catch vehicles on the opposite side of the road to the camera location. Some Police forces turn some speed cameras around periodically.
If you have been caught speeding, a NIP (Notice of Intended Prosecution) is normally sent out to the vehicles registered keeper within 14 working days.
A NIP (Notice of Intended Prosecution) is normally sent out in the post to the vehicles registered keeper within 14 working days of the motoring/speeding offence. This is no website or telephone you can check.
Gatos speed cameras use two methods to capture and record speeding motorists.
The first is via the speed cameras technology, which in the case of Gatso is via radar. When a motorist/vehicle passes the camera too fast the speed camera is set off or triggered to take the necessary photo(s).
The second is to use the white markings on the road. In the case of a Gatso camera two photos in quick succession are taken. Using the white markings on the road, the vehicles speed can also be calculated.
So evidence would be available proving or disproving that you were speeding at the time you passed the Gatso speed camera on the A1 near Berwick-Upon-Tweed.
Some of these cameras can be periodically turned to catch motorists travelling in opposite directions, but as a general rule these cameras cannot capture/record speeding vehicles travelling in either direction at the same time.
A police officer could stop speeding motorists and issuea ticket, but more common place these days is that a NIP is sent in the post.
It's not feasible and very time consuming for the Police to stop and issue a ticket to every speeding motorist at the roadside.
There is evidence that the 10% plus 3mph may have been relaxed to a much lower threshold. We have heard from motorists in recent weeks who have been caught speeding at just a few miles per hour (mph) over the enforced speed limit.
In terms of the SPECS camera system you drove through, it all depends on the speed limit that the camera system has been set to enforce from e.g. 53mph in a 50mph enforced zone. This differs from SPECS zone to SPECS zone and different Police authorities.
If you have been caught speeding, a NIP (Notice of Intended Prosecution) is normally issued within 14 working days of the motoring offence.
Gatso speed cameras and other cameras in overhead gantries normally would only be set to capture speeding motorists in the lane below.
However, if a camera is sited on the opposite side of the road, but is configured to catch/capture speeding motorist, then yes it is possible.
The first is via the speed cameras technology, which in the case of a Gatso is radar technology. When a motorist/vehicle passes the camera too fast the speed camera is set off or triggered to take the necessary photos, which in the case of a Gatso is two.
The second is to use the white markings on the road. In the case of the Gatso two photos in quick succession are taken. Using the white markings on the road, the vehicles speed can also be calculated.
So if you were driving within the speed limit, you have absolutely nothing to worry about.
No, this is not normal. Normally a speed camera e.g. Gatso will only flash when the speed of the passing vehicle triggers the camera, by driving beyond the threshold of the camera i.e. the speed limit. The speed limit threshold can be set differently for cars versus trucks and lorries.
Speed cameras can be mounted on either side of the road and still capture and record speeding motorists on the opposite side of the road, as long as they are calibrated and set up to do so.
Both rear and forward facing speed cameras exisit, it all depends on the type of speed camera and the technology they use, for example:
Read more about the different UK speed cameras.
Unlike speed cameras such as the Gatso or Truvelo that capture your speed at a fixed point. SPECS average speed camera capture your speed over a set distance e.g. 3 miles. Braking when you see a single SPECS camera will not enough to prevent you from getting caught speeding, if you were above the speed limit throughout and up to the SPECS camera.
Pictured right: Road Angel Gem+ display screen
Detectors such as the Road Angel Gem+ display on screen not only your vehicles speed, the SPECS speed camera speed limit, but also the average speed of your vehicle throughout the whole SPECS average speed zone.
The number of fixed penalty fines issued in England and Wales has risen seven-fold from around 260,000 in 2000-2001 to 1.8 million in 2003-2004. Speed cameras are reportedly currently netting more than £20m a year profits for the Treasury. Motorists caught by the cameras have three points added to their licence and pay a £100 fixed penalty.
The number of speed cameras has now reached about 6,000 across the country, 2,500 of them being mobile speed cameras.
Currently there are nine different speed camera types that are in use by the Police and local government to enforce speed limits on the UK road network. Speed cameras in use are Gatso, Truvelo, SPECS, Peek, SpeedCurb, Watchman, Traffic Light, DS2 and Mobile. To read more about a specific speed camera see Camera Types.
There are three main methods that UK speed cameras use to detect a speeding motorist. The first method used by Gatso and mobile cameras is to send a Laser or Radar beam at the passing vehicle. The beam is then returned back to the speed camera equipment, providing an exact speed. The second method used by Truvelo and DS2 is too use loops in the road, if the passing vehicle drives too fast over the loops, the speed camera is triggered. The third method used by SPECS is to take a photograph of all passing vehicles at point 'a', then several hundred metres along the road at point 'b' a second photograph is taken. Both photographs are date and time stamped, the speed camera equipment then calculates your average speed. To read more about a specific speed camera see Speed Camera Types.
A single speed camera in Nottinghamshire has caught almost 76,000 motorists in five years. The SPECS speed camera, on the A610, has caught almost a third of the speeding drivers in the county and has resulted in £4.2m in fines. The SPECS "time-over-distance" cameras measures how long it takes to pass between two points on a road, read read more about SPECS speed cameras.
Last updated: 15th November 2016