Speeding fines increase 'should not feed Treasury'

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The Independent Online

The extra millions raised by the Government's increased speeding and parking fines should improve road safety and not go into the Treasury's coffers, motoring associations said today.

The extra millions raised by the Government's increased speeding and parking fines should improve road safety and not go into the Treasury's coffers, motoring associations said today.

The new level of fines, which have not increased since 1992, set fixed penalty speeding penalties at £60 and increase parking penalties by £10 across the country.

The increases are part of the Government's Road Safety Strategy to reduce road deaths and injuries by 40 per cent over the next 10 years, the Home Office said. They will come into effect on November 1.

Home Office minister Charles Clarke said the government wanted to cut the death toll on the roads, with fixed penalties acting as an important deterrent to motorists tempted to break the law.

But Richard Freeman, policy spokesman for the AA said the Government would benefit by an extra £20 million per year from the increased fines.

"People would probably be a little less aggrieved if the money went towards road safety. It all goes straight into the Treasury.

"The money should be diverted into road safety but it won't be," he said.

The Royal Society of Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA) praised the rises, seeing them as imperative for reaching the Government target of reducing road deaths.

Spokesman Roger Vincent warned of drivers losing sight of the real tragedy behind road accidents by concentrating solely on the level of fines.

Peter Brill, spokesman for RAC Services and Foundation said: "Motorists would be much less unhappy about the increases if they knew that a significant element of the money was being used for road safety.

"The critical point is that the timing of this announcement is insensitive, particularly after the increase in petrol prices and the fuel crisis. This is going to be seen as yet another attack on the motorist."

But he defended the rise saying: "Speeding fines have not actually increased for between six-eight years - there is a very strong justification for these fines."

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