POLICE have been accused of being “somewhat sneaky and opportunistic” in penalising motorists caught speeding in a recently imposed temporary 40mph limit on the A8.
The PSNI has rejected Larne councillor Drew Niblock’s claim that officers have been “taking advantage of the situation by raising revenue through speeding fines”.
The DUP representative said he has been contacted by various constituents about the reduced speed limit between Ballynure and Bruslee. “This obviously is to accommodate the roadworks associated with dualling the current nine-mile stretch of single carriageway between Larne and Belfast.
“Whilst this work is necessary and the dualling of the A8 welcomed, I feel that I must make the public aware of the somewhat sneaky and opportunistic way in which the PSNI seem to be taking advantage of the situation by raising revenue through speeding fines,” he said.
“Mobile speed cameras have been placed at this area and speeding fines are being issued at an alarming rate,” added Cllr Niblock, who also urged the DRD Roads Service to upgrade signage indicating the revised limit.
Cllr Niblock appealed to the PSNI traffic division “not to take advantage of such a soft target area”, suggesting: “Surely there could be a period of lead-in time before action is taken? We are a matter of weeks away from Christmas. With that, and the current economic situation, the last thing the family budget requires is a speeding fine landing on their doorstep.”
A PSNI spokesman said: “Speeding is one of the main causation factors for serious collisions and we use a range of methods to detect motorists who break the speed limits, including the use of speed cameras.
“However, enforcement of the regulations is just one part of making our roads safer. Educating drivers from an early age on how to behave responsibly is a vital part of road safety and one we take very seriously. While we will continue our efforts around detections, changing attitudes - especially around younger drivers - will make our roads safer in the long run.”
The police spokesman said all speed restrictions – temporary or otherwise – must be observed.
“Temporary speed limits are imposed at roadworks for the protection of the workers on site and also to slow motorists down,” he explained.