The installation of safety cameras along the A14 has resulted in a 68 per cent reduction in deaths and serious injuries, according to new figures.

SAFETY cameras on the A14 are saving lives, with new figures showing a 68 per cent reduction in the number of deaths and serious injuries along the route.

Data showing the number of deaths and causalities at fixed camera sites across Cambridgeshire have been released by former Chief Constable Julie Spence.

The figures were compiled by Cambridgeshire County Council and compare the number of accidents at sites before and after camera installation.

They show that, when there were fixed cameras along the A14 between Cambridge and Huntingdon, from July 15, 2004 to December 15, 2006 there were 40 people killed or seriously injured and 342 casualties. Following the installation of average-speed cameras, between July 15, 2007 and December 15, 2009 there were 13 people killed or seriously injured and 215 casualties.

In total across the county over the past five years there has been a 33 per cent fall in the number of casualties at fixed camera sites and a reduction of 62 per cent in fatal or serious injuries.

Mrs Spence released the figures to emphasise the importance of the cameras at a time when some councils have taken decisions to turn theirs off to save money.

Following the Government reduction in the road safety grant for local authorities, Swindon Borough Council and Oxfordshire County Council have turned their cameras off.

But Mrs Spence warned against Cambridgeshire doing this, saying the cameras were saving lives and millions of pounds of taxpayers' money.

She said that, instead, more responsible driving was needed to help lessen the impact on the public purse from clearing up after road traffic collisions.

According to the Department for Transport, the cost of one road traffic fatality is £1,638,390, £185,220 for a serious injury and £14,280 for a slight injury.

Mrs Spence said: "It irritates me when people say speed cameras are just a tax. I say to them it is a tax you can choose to pay.

"It is clear that safety cameras save lives and millions of pounds of taxpayers' money.

"The people of Cambridgeshire do not want people speeding through their villages. They want their roads to be safe."

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Road Safety Partnership told The Hunts Post it had no plans to turn off its cameras.