Drivers avoid speeding penalties
Most of the police forces in England and Wales have signed up to new guidelines that will enable motorists to avoid points on their licence even if they are caught speeding at 86mph, it has emerged.
The new framework will allow speeding motorists to pay to complete a speed awareness course instead, if caught at up to 10% above the limit plus 9mph.
So far 37 police forces in England and Wales, now offer the Speed Awareness Courses ACPO, the Association of Chief Police Officers said.
An ACPO spokeswoman explained: "Over recent years, the number of people killed and seriously injured on our roads has fallen significantly reducing both the toll of personal tragedy and the cost to the public purse.
"This reduction has been achieved through a combination of improved engineering, enforcement and education.
"The changes were proposed following a consultation with the UK's leading driver academics who helped to develop the National Speed Awareness Course.
"The initial results of an independent research project showed that Speed Awareness Courses were highly effective in improving long-term driver behaviour on the roads. There is no such evidence to suggest that fines or penalty points offer any long-lasting effect."
Previously, only those driving at at 10% over the speed limit plus 6mph were eligible for the course.
A spokesman for road safety charity Brake said: "We think these new guidelines sends out completely the wrong message to drivers.
"Speeding or driving at inappropriate speeds is a factor in a quarter of all road crashes, tearing families and local communities apart on a daily basis."