It would be sad indeed if Mark Whitby endorsed the use of speed cameras. Speed limits are merely relics of a different motoring age and their basic usefulness needs to be radically re-examined (NCE last week).
It is quite correct to say that speeding is a crime. But where a law is not achieving what it is supposed to achieve and becomes simply an arbitrary form of taxation, then rational people and learned Institutions such as the ICE have a moral obligation to speak out and offer more rational alternatives.
The Department of Transport says that inappropriate speed is a major factor in, at the very most, only a third of all road accidents. Inappropriate speed, of course, is bad driving, and has nothing to do with exceeding speed limits.
Presumably, bad driving is a major factor in many of the remaining two thirds of road accidents. This can be tackled in three ways - by educating new drivers, re-educating offending drivers and by putting unmarked police cars on the roads to deal on the spot with the really dangerous drivers.
Plastering the countryside with more and more speed cameras will achieve nothing. I think Mr Whitby would be well advised to think again about this issue.
Roger Taylor, 16 Rycroft Road, Meols, Wirral CH47 9RQ