The new cameras do not only spot and photograph a speeding car, they can catch a motorist who is not wearing a seatbelt, ignoring a red light, or using their mobile phone while driving.
What’s more, they are much smaller and more difficult to spot than current models, and can be installed directly onto existing roadside furniture, such as traffic lights, or road signs.
The cameras – which are being tested in three communes in the Doubs department in eastern France and in Toulouse, in the southwest from early August – could be gradually installed across France from January 2022, officials have said.
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No fines will be issued during the test period. The new cameras being trialled in Doubs and Toulouse will gradually replace existing ones as they come up for upgrade.
According to the government’s road safety body Sécurité routière, there are 4,300 operational roadside safety cameras in France. By the end of the year, it is expected that there will be 4,700 in place.
In a report published in June, the Cour des comptes praised the effectiveness of France’s fleet roadside automated safety cameras in reducing speeding, saying their deployment “undoubtedly led to a reduction in speeding on France’s roads”.
Many motorists might feel somewhat differently about them.