Here’s the truth behind what they can and can’t see


I bet you’ve been out driving on occasion when you’ve noticed a speed camera van further up the road – but did they see you or not?

It seems it’s more than likely they did, as only a small sighting of part of your vehicle is enough for a speed camera van to be able to gain a reading of the speed you were doing.

So it looks as though hiding behind a bus or van in front of you on the road isn’t going to be of any help.

This is the myth that many drivers believe is true but it’s not the case according to the RAC and the reason for this myth buster is that mobile speed cameras work by using laser technology.

So long as the operator of the speed camera can see and target just a small section of your vehicle, they can get a reading of the speed you are doing, plus it seems that drivers on the other side of the road might need to watch out too!

Here's the truth behind what they can and can't see

Is it possible to escape being targeted by a speed camera van by hiding behind another vehicle? © Copyright Eric Jones and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.


Apparently, the laser beam discharged from a mobile speed camera as it targets your vehicle can be as small as 10cm in diameter.

The standard range for a mobile speed camera is two miles on a straight section of road – this is much longer than the line of sight for many locations that safety camera firms tend to patrol.

What they can’t do however, is record over brows of hills or around bends.

“Speed cameras are one of the most contentious points of motoring for a great many drivers,” said an RAC spokesman, adding: “These cameras can take on a number of forms, working from marked or unmarked cars, as well as being manually operated by police officers using radar guns and laser guns.”


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