SPEED cameras installed to stop accidents are not doing their job, according to national figures.

Serious accidents and fatalities are still being recorded on roads where cameras are positioned around Colchester.

The information came to light this week after the Government, for the first time, released statistics on the number of accidents and fatal crashes at camera sites.

Altogether, 480 accidents resulting in injuries have been recorded at the camera sites since they were introduced.

Mark Andrew, whose son Daniel died after being hit by a car in June 2008 in Greenstead Road, Colchester, said he was disappointed, but not surprised, by the figures.

“I did think at first they would reduce the amount of accidents on the roads,” he said.

“They are meant to be a deterrant and they work to a certain degree.

“But, the problem is people are so aware of them now. Drivers slow down when they see the signs and then, as soon as they go through the road markings, they’re off again. I’m forever seeing people slamming on their brakes to avoid a ticket and then going back to their former speed afterwards.”

Mr Andrew believes other traffic-calming measures need to be brought in to slow down drivers.

“Speed bumps and average speed cameras do work, but they obviously wouldn’t work in the same areas,” he said.

“Traffic-calming measures really need to be tailored to different areas.

“But Essex County Council perhaps needs to consider moving around the cameras we already have, because people are so used to where they are now.

“That way, drivers would need to travel at a slower speed so they aren’t caught out.”

Michelle Bell, of Littlefield Road, Colchester, lost her daughter Jordan, 14, after she was hit by a car in March 2008.

Mrs Bell, who is a driving instructor, said she was constantly reminding people they did not have to drive at the maximum speed limit.

“Just because you are in a 30mph zone, doesn’t mean you have to travel at 30mph,” she said.

“I constantly teach that to my students. We live in a society where everyone is impatient and there are so many distractions on the road.

“The amount of times I have another car behind me pushing me along when I am not doing anything wrong is appalling.

“We need speed cameras. They are not a cash generator for the Government – they are there to save lives.”

“People don’t understand how important speed is until it affects them,” said Mrs Bell.

“If you are going at 35mph in a 30mph zone, you’re likely to kill someone. Where does that 35mph get you? A few feet further up the road.”

Mike Penning, road safety minister, said: “Local residents have a right to expect that, when their council spends money on speed cameras, they publish information to show whether those cameras are helping to reduce accidents or not.”