The Speed Wise campaign is in response to a growing number of emails from readers who are struggling to deal with the rocketing number of fines landing on their desks from drivers. The campaign aims to tackle the issue by looking at the thinking behind the focus on speed, its effects on the industry and the arguments for and against current thinking.
The campaign's launch co-incides with latest research which is certain to fuel the flames of debate about the value of the Government's focus on speed, in particular the use of speed cameras.
The Department for Transport has released figures showing that the number of road deaths rose by 2% in 2003, with a total of 3,508 people killed, equivalent to nearly 10 a day.
However, serious injuries fell and there was a total of 290,607 road casualties, 4% down on 2002, although it is still 796 people a day. The number of deaths among car users rose 1% to 1,769, but the number seriously injured fell 9% to 15,522. Total casualties among car users were 188,342, down 5%.
Further analysis reveals that much of the rise in road deaths has come from motorcycle users.
The campaign will look in more depth at the figures, examine the speed camera sites that work and those that don't and look at the facts about speed to help drivers understand the relative risks and rewards of driving at, under or over the speed limit.
Recently, Richard Brunstrom, head of the Association of Chief Police Officers' road policing division, said it was time to revert to covert equipment to trap drivers. He also said a small lobby group was blinding the Government to the benefits of speed cameras.
The Fleet News campaign will ensure fleet decision-makers can take a balanced view on the issue and help their drivers understand the dangers when they decide to speed.