West Mercia Police Chief Constable Anthony Bangham has called for the current 10% buffer zone to be scrapped.
Bangham also said speed awareness courses are used too widely, as opposed to giving out penalty points and fines to offenders.
Current guidance suggests police forces should issue penalties for drivers who break speed limits only if they are caught at 10% plus 2mph over the limit, i.e. 35mph in a 30mph zone.
Current UK speeding fines:
The minimum penalty for speeding is a £100 fine and 3 penalty points on your licence.
The maximum possible fine for speeding is £1,000 (rising to £2,500 if the incident took place on a motorway).
If you acquire 6 or more penalty points within the first 2 years of passing your test, your licence will be revoked.
On Bangham’s comments, AA President Edmund King has said “we need alert, safe drivers checking the road ahead and adhering to the limits, rather than paranoid drivers forever checking the speedometer to check they are 1mph above or below the limit…Surely it is better to educate motorists rather than just slap a fine on them.”
Joshua Harris, Director of Campaigns at road safety charity Brake, said, “Drivers who go beyond these (speed) limits are behaving recklessly and endangering the lives of themselves and others. Brake wholeheartedly supports Chief Constable Anthony Bangham’s view that a zero-tolerance approach to speeding is required, sending a clear signal that breaking the law is not acceptable.”
Road safety spokesman for the RAC, Pete Williams, said “Surely, the police’s focus should be on tackling those who exceed the speed limit consistently, and, or excessively, as they present the greatest road safety risk. It seems very wrong to penalise law-abiding motorists who may occasionally go very slightly above the limit.”