Thousands caught speeding on Orwell Bridge – but is the message getting through?

Average speed cameras on the A14 by the Orwell Bridge - but many drivers are still ignoring the warn

Average speed cameras on the A14 by the Orwell Bridge - but many drivers are still ignoring the warnings.

More than 4,000 motorists were caught speeding during the first three months of enforcing the new 60mph speed limit on the Orwell Bridge.

But the latest figures do suggest that the message about speeding on that section of the A14 is getting through.

The latest figures from Suffolk Police show that 926 motorists were caught exceeding the 60mph speed limit on the bridge by the average speed cameras in September.

That is just over half the number in July when 1,699 were caught speeding, and a significant fall on August when 1,421 broke the speed limit.

However it still works out at more than 30 a day.

The fastest speed recorded by the average speed cameras was 105mph.

Most of the motorists caught speeding have been sent fixed penalty notices – or have been given the chance to attend a speed awareness course as an alternative to a fine and points on their driving licence.

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Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner Tim Passmore welcomed the drop – but said there were still far too many motorists ignoring the speed limit.

He said “I’m pleased to see that the number of drivers caught speeding over the Orwell Bridge has reduced this month – hopefully the message is getting through at last but there is still work to be done.

“While driver behaviour seems to be improving, the fact that over 4,000 drivers have been caught speeding over a three month period is very disappointing, and that one driver was doing 105mph is especially concerning.”

The limit was introduced in a bid to reduce the number of accidents which cause major problems in the town centre.

Mr Passmore added: “We campaigned hard to get the 60mph limit on the bridge and, as someone who uses the bridge almost every day, I do think it is making a positive difference.

“I will continue to monitor the impact of the average speed cameras and work with Highways England to do all we can to ensure we keep traffic on the A14 moving safely.”

Inspector Tim Lusher of the police roads unit said: “I am both staggered and extremely disappointed that more than 4,000 people have been caught speeding over the Orwell Bridge in just three months.

“Although there is an improvement in the figures for September, in excess of 900 motorists speeding is still a huge number.

“The speed limit and warnings advising that average speed cameras are in use are clearly signposted, so there is no excuse for this number of motorists to flout the restriction.

“Speeding is one of the ‘fatal four’ and speed limits are in place for a reason – to improve road safety and reduce the number of collisions and casualties on our highways.”