UK Daily Mail 
Monday, Nov 24, 2008
Motorists will face amateur speed traps run by local volunteer groups in towns and villages across the country, it was revealed yesterday.
Under rules to be sent to police forces in the new year, bands of volunteers will be supplied with speed detection equipment and asked to use it to identify drivers exceeding limits in their area.
The guidelines, prepared by the Association of Chief Police Officers, will set a national pattern for schemes which have been trialled in some areas – often with controversy.
Drivers caught breaking limits by ‘community speed watch’ groups have their numberplates checked on the police national computer and are sent warning letters by police forces.
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They can be targeted for prosecution if they get three letters for speeding through volunteer group traps. Motoring organisations warned yesterday that the proposals risk setting neighbour against neighbour and encouraging vigilantism. Some trial schemes had to be abandoned after they led to disputes between local people.
The decision to encourage speed trap volunteers follows the move by local councils to recruit members of the public to watch for breaches of rubbish collection and recycling rules.
That has been condemned by critics as an attempt to get neighbour to spy on neighbour. Acpo spokesman Trevor Hall said the guidelines would encourage national consistency in the schemes.