This traffic speed camera was installed on Springbank Drive and Wonderland Rd in London, Ontario in May, 2017.

It seems like a pointless question to most observers but do traffic speed cameras improve safety at the locations where they are installed?

Traffic speed cameras should cause more drivers to travel at or below the speed limit at the locations where the cameras are installed. And it is believed that this lower speed will increase the safety of the road system. But it took a long time before the flat-earth society was proven wrong by Copernicus. Although it was obvious that the earth appeared flat, science proved that it was indeed a sphere. So do the things that appear obvious need to be confirmed?

Recent news from Toronto, Ontario indicated that, between July and November of 2020, 50 “automated speed enforcement (ASE) devices”  caused 53,000 tickets to be issued for speeding. This result was applauded by Toronto’s Mayor John Tory and it might be rightly so. But the ultimate proof of success cannot be just in successfully reducing speeds but in improving safety. What awaits is a scientific study, under scientifically approved procedures, that safety has been improved, and by how much. We have every reason to believe such a study will confirm the value of speed cameras, but are there limitations that need to be explored?