November 26, 2003

Filled to Overflowing

I hate to harp on about speed cameras, but the situation is getting quite ridiculous. The average yearly cost of a speed camera is over 100,000 ($170,000). The average cost of a policeman, with overtime and allowances, is under 35,000. Wouldn't it be more cost effective to hire more cops and give them radar guns?

With a speed camera, you would think the primary running cost would be the film and processing. Not true. That only accounts for about 18,000. The biggest cost is salaries. This is because the cameras are not run by the police. They are run my a multi-tiered system. The day-to-day responsibility belongs to various consultanting firms. These are hired by quangos, called safety camera partnerships. The tickets are processed by the quangos and sent to the courts to further processed. Then they have to be sent to the DVLA for further processing. All this processing takes manpower. Manpower takes money.

There is no need to worry that there won't be enough money to pay for it. They have more money than they know what to do with -- literally. Even after they have padded everyone's pocket, wheelbarrow loads of the cash has to be carted over to HM Treasury.

Posted by david at November 26, 2003 12:44 PM | TrackBack