Safety programme halves deaths

A controversial road safety scheme has been credited with halving the number of deaths on a notorious blackspot.

The scheme, dubbed Britain's longest speed trap, installed average speed camera system on the A77 route in Ayrshire three years ago.

According to the A77 Safety Group the 40 cameras on the 32-mile stretch from Ayr to Girvan have significantly reduced casualties and accident numbers.

New figures show that seven people have been killed in accidents in the three years following the initiative, compared with 13 deaths before Specs (the Speed Enforcement Camera System) was introduced.

Some 52 road users were seriously injured in 2002-2005 compared with 34 in the three years that followed.

Hugh McCafferty of Transport Scotland, chair of the A77 Safety Group, said the cameras were here to stay.

He said: "Specs has clearly played a key part in reducing accident numbers and that is why the cameras will remain in place."

The group said there had been a "huge" decrease in vehicle speeds, with a high degree of compliance by motorists.

Specs was introduced in July 2005 as a joint project between Transport Scotland and Strathclyde Safety Camera Partnership costing £1.1 million.

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