Average Speed Cameras To Be Introduced On A9
A new average speed camera system, which will run from Dunblane to Inverness, is to be installed on the A9 to improve safety.
Transport Minister Keith Brown visited Blackford along the route today (26 July) to see one of the areas that will benefit from the scheme. He was accompanied by Superintendent Iain Murray from Police Scotland and Michael McDonnell, Director of Road Safety Scotland.
The decision to introduce the system follows an on-going review of evidence as well as careful consideration of the views of members of the A9 Safety Group over the last year.
The A9 system will be the second in Scotland. The first was installed on the A77 in Ayrshire between Bogend Toll and Ardwell Bay in 2005. Since then it has delivered a 46 per cent reduction in fatal accidents and 35 per cent reduction in serious accidents.
The camera system will back up a number of measures that have been introduced on the A9 in a bid to improve safety in recent years. More than £50 million has been invested in safety and structural improvements on the route since 2007. This includes improved consistency of signing and lining, improved geometry and safety barrier works as well as variable messaging signs displaying journey times.
Transport Minister Keith Brown said:
“The A9 is one of Scotland’s most important routes, linking Inverness to the rest of the country and it is extremely important that it is as safe as possible for all road users.
“The A9 Safety Group has recommended that an average speed camera system is introduced to help cut down on the number of accidents and Transport Scotland will now take this forward.
“While the Scottish Government believes that dualling will be the long-term solution to the safety issues on the A9 - we are the first administration committed to making the road dual carriageway all the way from Perth to Inverness a reality - we also want to make the immediate improvements that will bring positive changes to driver behaviour.
“Average speed cameras systems have a proven track record of reducing casualties and excessive speed and their high visibility leads to better compliance of the speed limit.
“We hope to see the first of the cameras introduced early next year and expect the system to be fully operational in the Summer of 2014.”
Superintendent Iain Murray from Police Scotland said:
“Police Scotland is committed to making Scotland's roads safer and any initiative that furthers that aim is welcome. Average speed cameras have previously proved their ability to reduce casualties on other major roads in Scotland and analysis shows that there will be similar benefits on the A9.
“There is no doubt that this announcement will help to reduce the concerns of a great many people who have made their concerns about safety on the road known in recent days however it is clear that the introduction of the system will take some time.
“I would therefore wish to reassure all road users that in the meantime the Trunk Roads Patrol Group will continue to provide a higher level of patrols on the A9, as well as other strategic routes in Scotland, to influence road user behaviour, encourage better driving and enforce legislation when required.”
Director of Road Safety Scotland, Michael McDonnell said:
“The A9 Safety Group’s objective is to positively influence driver behaviours in a way that helps reduce road casualty figures.
“It has been demonstrated in other locations that average speed cameras reduce the number of people being killed and seriously injured and this offers real potential to improve safety on the A9 ahead of the dualling programme.”
The system will operate on the A9 from just north of Keir Roundabout (Dunblane) to just south of Raigmore Interchange (Inverness). This is approximately 136 miles (220 km’s).
It is expected that the cost of the system will be in the region of £2.5 million. Transport Scotland as the Trunk Road Authority will pay for this initiative.
The A9 Safety Group consists of membership from Transport Scotland, Police Scotland, Local Authorities, Safety Camera Partnerships, Trunk Road operating Companies, the Freight Transport Association, the Road Haulage Association, the Confederation of Passenger Transport and Stagecoach. The objective of the multi-agency group is to work in partnership to positively influence driver behaviours in a way that helps reduce road casualty figures on the A9 before and during the A9 dualling programme.