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Mechanical law enforcement: speeding and camera technology

Cooper, S 2010, 'Mechanical law enforcement: speeding and camera technology' , Journal of Criminal Law, 74 (5) , pp. 409-414.

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      Abstract

      Excessive and inappropriate speeding is--according to the ACPO2 Road Policing Strategy--one of the four key behaviours which contribute to avoidable deaths and injury by making collisions more likely, and by making the resultant injuries worse.3 Although the imposition of a specific speed limit is a matter for legisla-tion4 (either primary or in regulations and orders), the enforcement of those limits is an operational matter for the police force involved. Since the Road Traffic Act 1991, increasing reliance has been placed on the use of automatic devices for detecting speeding offences.5 One of these devices, the speed camera, does not enjoy universal popularity; its use tends to evoke strong emotive feelings whether they are of support or condemnation. The camera detects and gathers the initial evidence which is then used to initiate the process of prosecution and punishment. A fixed penalty ticket procedure is available for offences of speeding detected by a camera, and it is common for the alleged offender never to experience any form of real human interaction with the prosecuting authorities from the moment of offending through to the conclusion, whatever that may be.6 The details of the offence are provided by the output of the machine and it is the machine that proves the facts of the offence. The system is unarguably administratively efficient and cost-effective, but are there any other costs or consequences that follow from relying on an almost totally mechanised and robotic system of law enforcement?

      Item Type: Article
      Uncontrolled Keywords: Excessive speed, robotic detection, objective enforcement, inadequate context, unjust
      Themes: Media, Digital Technology and the Creative Economy
      Schools: Colleges and Schools > College of Business & Law > Salford Business School > International Strategy People Management & Salford Law
      Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Criminal Law
      Publisher: Vathek Publishing
      Refereed: Yes
      ISSN: 0022-0183
      Depositing User: Users 47901 not found.
      Date Deposited: 18 May 2011 11:32
      Last Modified: 29 Oct 2013 13:54
      URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/15817

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