HADECS 3 Speed Cameras Explained

There's been some misleading messages portrayed in the national press recently about a new "stealth" speeding cameras called HADECS 3 so let us explain them to you.

What are HADECS 3?

HADECS 3 which stands for Highways Agency Digital Enforcement Camera System 3 are the UK’s newest speed cameras and have been installed on the following motorways M25 (J5-7 and J23-27), M1 (J28-31 & J39-42), M20 (J4-7), M3 (J2-4a), M4 (J3-14 & J19-20), M42 (J3a-J9), M5 (J4a-6 & J15-17) and M6 (J4-13), with more cameras expected to be installed and in operation by March 2018.

The controversy?

Due its differing appearance HADECS 3 have been labelled the “stealth speed camera” by motorists and the press as unlike our usual bright yellow speed cameras these are relatively small and a grey colour.

Found on MIDAS, Matrix signs and the sides of gantries makes these cameras difficult to spot which has led to many motorists being caught out by the cameras. With figures showing over 1,800 motorists were fined between November 2015 and January 2016 on the M25 J5-6 alone.

The reasoning behind?

The cameras which have been installed on smart motorways, which use technology to keep traffic moving through variable speed limits and the use of the hard shoulder as an additional lane during congestion are there to encourage motorists to stick to the variable speed limits, keep traffic moving and reduce the number of accidents.

The facts?

  • HADECS 3 cameras don’t use film which means there is no limit to the number of photos they can take.
  • The single camera and radar gun is able to cover all lanes of a motorway carriage, unlike older cameras which can only cover one lane.
  • The cameras are active at all times, so even when variable speed limits have been lifted they are still enforcing the normal speed limit.
  • The minimum fixed penalty for being caught speeding by a motorway speed camera is a £100 fine and a minimum of 3 penalty points.
  • The cameras are not there to catch motorists out, they aim to keep the traffic moving during busy period.

Driving on smart motorways

  • Never drive under a red X.
  • Stick to the speed limit displayed on the gantries.
  • Don’t drive on the hard shoulder unless indicated.
  • If there’s no hard shoulder use the refuge areas for emergencies.
  • Immediately put your hazard lights on if you break down.