HUNDREDS of drivers have been caught putting their foot down at speeding hotspots.
The road where vehicles are most likely to be found travelling over the limit is the A690 at West Rainton, where almost 1,000 cars were caught going over the 50mph limit.
Seaham’s Stockton Road came top of the table for roads where the restrictions are regularly breached in Durham and East Durham, with 554 vehicles breaking the limit between mid-March and the end of December.
Durham Constabulary does not have fixed cameras, carrying out its checks with mobile cameras and patrols.
Temporary Chief Inspector Ed Turner, head of the joint Cleveland and Durham specialist operations unit, said: “The selection of sites suitable for camera enforcement, either fixed or mobile, is strictly governed by set criteria.
“There must be a certain number of collisions over a certain period in which speed is a significant contributory factor.
“For example, the A690 at Rainton has a number of crossing points where vehicles are having to cross the dual carriageway, which is a major risk.
“It is also the reason why the limit was reduced to 50mph.
“Due to the collision history, the site met the relevant criteria for safety camera deployment.
“Some drivers will always break the speed limit irrespective of the consequences, just as a small minority of people will always commit crime.
“These offenders are dealt with through prosecution as no other level of intervention is suitable.”
While police efforts to monitor and discipline drivers have been praised, campaigners say more must be done by the authorities to curb speeding motorists.
Ed Morrow, campaigns officer for Brake, said: “Speed limits exist for a reason – they are proven to save lives – and we support Durham Constabulary’s efforts to enforce them, including by using cameras, and especially at locations known to be most dangerous.
“However, drivers regularly caught speeding in the same places shows existing penalties are not enough to deter risky law-breaking behaviour.
“Increasing the fixed penalty from £100 to £500 to £1,000 would send out the message that speeding is a real crime with real, deadly consequences, and won’t be tolerated.”
The Echo also asked Northumbria Police for the 10 roads where speed limits were most frequently broken across Sunderland and its surrounding towns and villages, but it said it was unable to access the details within the time limit of a Freedom of Information Request.