Speed camera officer dispels myths about job - and reveals how Irish motorists can avoid getting caught

Published date28 May 2022
Publication titleDublinLive (Ireland)
The vans are all located on roads where there has been a speed-related collision involving an injury or fatality

They are operated by GoSafe both in the UK and Ireland using vans marked with high-visibility reflective material and displaying a safety camera symbol.

While laws on Irish roads differ slightly to those in the UK, both countries use speed cameras on their roads.

Now, a man who sits inside a speed camera van has spoken out to bust the myths behind the job.

Gareth Thomas, a speed reduction officer for the last seven years and former police officer, wanted to set the record straight on the things we actually "know" about speed cameras.

Speaking to North Wales Live, Gareth, a Go Safe Casualty Reduction Officer, has explained how speed cameras work, the truth behind some of the most popular myths and claims - and how you can avoid being caught speeding.

He said: "I decided after retiring that I wanted to make the roads as safe as they can be in this area.

"The aim of cameras is to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured on our roads.

"Go Safe prefers to educate drivers rather than punish them with fines and penalty points."

Is it true that speed vans have to be visible at all times?

No. There are no laws about visibility, so there is nothing stopping an officer operating in the dark.

But they don't often choose to do this, and maintain that being visible acts as a deterrent in its own right.

Gareth, said: "Legally, we don't have to be visible. I could camouflage myself if I wanted to - but it's all about being fair, education and preventing an accident.

"Even if I parked my van and went for a walk somewhere, it would deter people speeding right away."

Can officers only catch motorists travelling in one direction?

No. Any car that passes a van is recorded on the officer's camera.

So if you're exceeding the speed limit whether you're driving in the same or opposite direction to the van, you can expect a speeding ticket.

Are officers a revenue collector for the Government?

No. Gareth, explained: "We're not here to get figures or to make money. We're just here to catch the people who are speeding.

"If I get a day where I don't get any drivers speeding, then I know I've done my job.

"If I've been working an eight hour shift, I just hope at least one person that day has escaped injury or a crash has been avoided."

Can I get caught speeding more than once on the same day by the same camera?

The current position with this particular...

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